Kanye West Wants To ‘Personally’ Help Taylor Swift Get Her Masters Back
They might be involved in the most infamous celebrity feud of the past decade, but it seems Kanye West and Taylor Swift could be on the same team for once.
In a series of tweets over the course of the past week, the rapper expressed his desire to help Taylor get her masters back following Scooter Braun’s acquisition of Big Machine Records – the label Taylor released her first six award-winning albums with – last June. As such, the record executive owns most of her music catalogue.
It comes after the Cardigan singer alleged Braun, along with Scott Borchetta, was ‘exercising tyrannical control’ over her by preventing her from performing her old songs on television unless she followed a series of ‘rules’.
Now, Kanye has said he will ‘personally see to it’ that Taylor gets her Big Machine Records catalogue back while describing the music industry as ‘modern day slavery’ and saying ‘all artists must be free’.
‘I’M GOING TO PERSONALLY SEE TO IT THAT TAYLOR SWIFT GETS HER MASTERS BACK,’ the rapper tweeted on Friday, September 18. ‘SCOOTER IS A CLOSE FAMILY FRIEND.’
He went on to say he was going to ‘move the entire music industry into the 21st century’, adding: ‘We’re going to transparently change every album deal every publishing deal every merch deal every touring deal… All artist [sic] must be free.’
Taylor is currently involved in an ongoing battle over the rights to her music archive, having publicly criticised Braun and Borchetta a number of times for refusing to give her ownership of her masters.
After the pair released some of Taylor’s old recordings on a new album without her permission earlier this year, the singer took to social media to tell her fans she had not approved of its release.
In the post, she told her fans the recording was from a 2008 radio show performance she did when she was 18 before accusing the pair of ‘shameless greed in the time of Coronavirus,’ adding: ‘So tasteless but very transparent.’
When Braun’s Ithaca Holdings signed a $300 million deal for Borchetta’s Big Machine Label Group in June 2019, Taylor made her thoughts on the matter clear in an emotional Tumblr post.
‘Scooter has stripped me of my life’s work, that I wasn’t given an opportunity to buy,’ she wrote at the time. ‘Essentially, my musical legacy is about to lie in the hands of someone who tried to dismantle it. This is my worst case scenario.’
The singer added:
He knew what he was doing; they both did. Controlling a woman who didn’t want to be associated with them. In perpetuity. That means forever.
Thankfully, Taylor signed a contract with Universal Music Publishing Group and its label Republic Records in 2018, which she said gave her ownership of the masters for her work with them.
However, she still doesn’t own her previous masters, with a petition calling for the singer to be able to perform and use her own art as she pleases having reached more than 131,000 signatures.
While an agreement was eventually reached allowing Taylor to perform her old songs at the AMA’s and throughout her Netflix documentary last year, the singer still ultimately has no control over her back catalogue.
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