‘Taylor Swift is Free!’ Fans celebrate as contract barring the singer from re-recording her old music runs out after bitter feud with former record label over her back catalogue
- Taylor Swift is free to re-record first five albums after deal with old label ran out
- Means 30-year-old can effectively regain control over the albums by releasing copycat versions on her new record label
- Row erupted after Swift’s old label was sold to man she accused of bullying her
- Fans celebrated by getting #TaylorIsFree trending on Twitter as contract expired
Taylor Swift fans are celebrating the end of a contract that blocked her from re-recording her old music amid a row over ownership with her former record label.
It means the 30-year-old songstress can now regain control over her first five studio albums by recording copycat versions and releasing them on her new label.
Swift announced her intention to re-record the albums last year, after Big Machine Label Group – the label she signed to aged 15 – was sold to Scooter Braun, a man with whom she has a long-running feud. She is now signed to Universal Music.
Fans of the country singer – worth and estimated $365million – got #TaylorIsFree trending on Twitter to celebrate the date.
Excited: Fans got the hashtag #TaylorIsFree trending Sunday to celebrate the fact that as of November 1, pop superstar Taylor Swift can now re-record her original music again
‘Owned by Taylor Swift,’ one fan wrote, alongside a photoshopped image of the singer holding all of her albums.
‘Taylor can finally put “owned by Taylor Swift” on all of her albums,’ another said.
Taylor signed with Big Machine Label Group back in 2006 after founder and then-owner Scott Borchetta discovered her singing in a Nashville coffee shop.
Borchetta helped guide her from raw talent to global pop phenomenon, scooping up Grammys, AMAs, Billboard Music Awards and seven Guinness World records along the way.
Her first six albums were released on Big Machine, and helped earn the label 80 per cent of its revenue, according to Variety.
But in early 2019, the label was sold to Ichaca Holdings, a music conglomerate owned by Scooter Braun.
Braun – an entrepreneur, record executive and investor – has managed a slew of stars including Justin Bieber and Ariana Grande, and has also been named on Time100’s list of most-influential people and Forbes ’40 under 40′ list.
He also has a decade-long feud with Swift that has played out in rows between her and artists he manages, including when Kanye West interrupted her acceptance speech at the 2009 MTV Music Awards.
Swift said she was unaware that Big Machine had been sold to Braun’s firm in a $300million deal.
‘This is what happens when you sign a deal at fifteen to someone for whom the term “loyalty” is clearly just a contractual concept,’ she said at the time.
‘When that man says “Music has value”, he means its value is beholden to men who had no part in creating it.
‘Any time Scott Borchetta has heard the words “Scooter Braun” escape my lips, it was when I was either crying or trying not to.’
Meanwhile, she has given permission for her politically-charged song Only the Young to be used in a video in support of the Democratic Party.
The promo begins with Senator Kamala Harris, the vice-presidential nominee, asking: ‘Why are so many powerful people trying to make it so difficult for us to vote?’
The video then goes into Swift’s song which is played to backdrop of events from the last four years under the Trump presidency, including issues of immigration, children being separated from their parents at the border, and the coronavirus pandemic.
Made her views known: She’s allowed one of her songs to be used for the first time in a political ad – and it was to encourage people to vote for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris
Swift action: Her politically-charged song Only the Young has been used in a new music video in support of the Democratic Party ahead of Tuesday’s presidential election
In 2018, Swift broke with years of silence over her political views when she attacked a Republican running for office in her home state of Tennessee.
The pop superstar came out swinging as she vowed to oppose senate candidate Marsha Blackburn over her voting record on women’s rights and LGBTQ rights.
Swift said she refuses to vote for someone ‘who will not be willing to fight for dignity for ALL Americans, no matter their skin color, gender or who they love.’
She took issue with Blackburn voting against gay marriage, supporting business owners who refuse service to gay couples, voting against equal pay laws, and against a bill which aimed to protect women from domestic violence.
Swift said at the time: ‘I always have and always will cast my vote based on which candidate will protect and fight for the human rights I believe we all deserve in this country.’
She went on: ‘I believe in the fight for LGBTQ rights, and that any form of discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender is WRONG.
‘I believe that the systemic racism we still see in this country towards people of color is terrifying, sickening and prevalent.’
Political: The promo begins with Senator Harris narrating, as she asks, ‘Why are so many powerful people trying to make it so difficult for us to vote?’
Poignant: Swift’s poignant lyrics include: They aren’t gonna help us / Too busy helping themselves / They aren’t gonna change this / We gotta do it ourselves.’
Battle: The video also tackles the government’s response to coronavirus
Support: Taylor is throwing her weight behind Joe Biden
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