Taylor Swift Says Scooter Braun and Scott Borchetta Blocking Her from Performing Old Songs at AMAs
Months after Scooter Braun purchased Big Machine Label, Taylor Swift says he and Scott Borchetta are blocking her from performing her old songs at the AMAs
The drama between Taylor Swift, Scooter Braun and Big Machine Label co-founder Scott Borchetta is far from over.
On Thursday, the Grammy winner, 29, released a scathing Tumblr post, accusing the manager, 38, and her former label head, 57, of blocking her from performing her old hits at the American Music Awards later this month.
“I’ve been planning to perform a medley of my hits throughout the decade on the show. Scott Borchetta and Scooter Braun have now said that I’m not allowed to perform my old songs on television because they claim that would be re-recording my music before I’m allowed to next year,” she wrote.
A rep for Big Machine Label Group and a rep for Braun did not immediately respond to a request for comment from PEOPLE.
The singer also revealed she has been working with Netflix on a documentary about her “life for the past few years,” but that Borchetta and Braun — who purchased Big Machine Label for $300 million earlier this year — have “declined the use of my older music or performance footage for this project.”
According to Swift, Borchetta tried to negotiate and offered to let her perform and use her music if she agreed not to re-record “copycat versions” of her old songs and “stop talking about him and Scooter Braun.”
However, the superstar doubled down on her criticism of the business partners and asked her fans for their help.
“The message being sent to me is very clear. Basically, be a good little girl and shut up. Or you’ll be punished,” wrote Swift. “Please let Scott Borchetta and Scooter Braun know how you feel about this.”
Without naming specific artist names, Swift also asked her fans to reach out to Braun’s clients in hopes that they “can talk some sense into the men who are exercising tyrannical control over someone who just wants to play the music she wrote.”
On Friday morning, Big Machine Label Group released a statement that denied Swift’s allegations and accused her of “false information.”
“As Taylor Swift’s partner for over a decade, we were shocked to see her Tumblr statements yesterday based on false information. At no point did we say Taylor could not perform on the AMAs or block her Netflix special,” the statement read. “In fact, we do not have the right to keep her from performing live anywhere. Since Taylor’s decision to leave Big Machine last fall, we have continued to honor all of her requests to license her catalog to third parties as she promotes her current record in which we do not financially participate.”
“We have worked diligently to have a conversation about these matters with Taylor and her team to productively move forward,” the statement added. “We started to see progress over the past two weeks and were optimistic as recently as yesterday that this may get resolved. However, despite our persistent efforts to find a private and mutually satisfactory solution, Taylor made a unilateral decision last night to enlist her fanbase in a calculated manner that greatly affects the safety of our employees and their families.”
“All we ask is to have a direct and honest conversation,” the statement concluded. “When that happens, you will see there is nothing but respect, kindness and support waiting for you on the other side. To date, not one of the invitations to speak with us and work through this has been accepted.”
In late June, Swift slammed Braun, who manages stars like Ariana Grande and Justin Bieber, upon learning that his Ithaca Holdings had acquired her former record label from Borchetta, essentially taking ownership of her masters.
“Scooter has stripped me of my life’s work, that I wasn’t given an opportunity to buy. Essentially, my musical legacy is about to lie in the hands of someone who tried to dismantle it,” she said, accusing Braun of using Justin Bieber and Kanye West to bully her on social media after a feud over West’s song lyrics on the track “Famous.”
Borchetta defended Braun in a letter posted to his label’s web site, writing: “As to her comments about ‘being in tears or close to it’ anytime my new partner Scooter Braun’s name was brought up, I certainly never experienced that.”
“Was I aware of some prior issues between Taylor and Justin Bieber? Yes. But there were also times where Taylor knew that I was close to Scooter and that Scooter was a very good source of information for upcoming album releases, tours, etc, and I’d reach out to him for information on our behalf,” Borchetta continued. “Scooter has always been and will continue to be a supporter and honest custodian for Taylor and her music.”
In September, Braun addressed his feud with the “Lover” singer in the latest episode of Tony Gonzalez’s Wide Open podcast.
“It’s hard when you get attacked and it’s not based on any truth, but for that other person it may be based in truth but they don’t have all the information,” he said. “And that’s why I am always open to communication and having a conversation with someone and saying, ‘Maybe this was a misunderstanding and I am happy to have the conversation with you.’ But not everybody is willing to do that and you can’t go through life thinking you’re going to be friends and everyone is going to like you.”
Braun added that he doesn’t “do anything with malicious intent,” despite what Swift and her supporters have said.
“I try to do the right thing,” he said. “Not everyone is going to be happy with what you do. I think in the long-term, I’ve learned this over time, the truth always comes out. And I am confident in that.”