In the on-going war of words between Taylor Swift and some of the biggest players in the music industry, Swift's ex-boss and former CEO of Big Machine Records, Scott Borchetta, clapped back with a missive titled, "So, It's Time for Some Truth." The attack comes after Swift claimed Borchetta failed to make her aware of the sale of her entire music catalog to Scooter Braun, an American entrepreneur who Swift claims is "manipulative" and a "bully."
Borchetta, who owned Big Machine Records, sold Swift's first six albums, including the entirety of her master recording rights for records released on the label, to Scooter Braun. Braun manages Justin Bieber, Ariana Grande, Dan + Shay, Tori Kelly, David Guetta and, formerly, Kanye West, among others.
Billboard reported that Borchetta wrote a statement titled, "So, It's Time for Some Truth," which was posted to Big Machine Label Group's website on Sunday night. Borchetta wrote that he texted Swift personally about the impending sale on Saturday, June 29 "so she could hear it directly from me."
Swift claims she learned of the deal at the same time the public did – on Sunday, June 30 – when news accounts of the business transaction were released.
Borchetta said that it was unlikely Swift did not know of the deal, which was worth $300 million, prior to the news being released. He claims that two executives from Swift's management team were on a June 25 call informing shareholders of the sale.Swift claims that Borchetta told her in 2018 that, if she re-signed with the label (which she left in November of that same year for a new deal with Universal Music Group), she would be able to "earn" one album master back at a time for each new album she turned in, therefore, remaining tied to the company for many years. Such a deal would have effectively tied Swift to Braun, whom she claimed bullied her, along with Kanye West, Kim Kardashian and Justin Bieber.
Swift claims that, through this purchase, Braun "stripped" her of her life's work.Swift also said in her post that, during contract negotiations in 2018, she felt Borchetta would eventually sell Big Machine Records, "thereby selling me and my future."
Borchetta clapped back the letter posted to the BM website, stating that this was not the case. He remarked that Swift was given the opportunity to have 100 percent of all her assets transferred to her immediately upon signing the new agreement. "We were working together on a new type of deal for our new streaming world that was not necessarily tied to 'albums' but more of a length of time… Taylor had every chance in the world to own not just her master recordings, but every video, photograph, everything associated to her career. She chose to leave."Swift claimed in a post on Tumblr that this deal was her worst case scenario, adding that "this is what happens when you sign a deal at fifteen to someone for whom the term 'loyalty' is clearly just a contractual concept. And when that man says 'Music has value', he means its value is beholden to men who had no part in creating it."
Big Machine owns the Taylor Swift albums, Taylor Swift, Fearless, Speak Now, Red, 1989 and Reputation, and is the recording company that hosts superstar artists such as Reba McEntire, Sheryl Crow, Florida Georgia Line, Thomas Rhett, Rascal Flatts and Lady Antebellum.