The pop star released a lengthy statement on Thursday, calling the move a “tasteless” money grab. Swift also confirmed previous reports that Scooter Braun acquired the label (and with it the rights to Taylor’s entire discography) for $330 million.
“I want to thank my fans for making me aware that my former record label is putting out an ‘album’ of live performances of mine tonight,” she wrote via Instagram Stories. “This recording is from a 2008 radio show performance I did when I was 18. Big Machine has listed the date as a 2018 release but they’re actually releasing it tonight at midnight.”
She continued, “I’m always honest with you guys about this stuff so I just wanted to tell you that this release is not approved by me. It looks to like Scooter Braun and his financial backers, 23 Capital, Alex Soros and the Soros family and The Carlyle Group have seen the latest balance sheets and realized that paying $330 MILLION for my music wasn’t exactly a wise choice and they need money.”
“In my opinion,” Swift concluded, “Just another case of shameless greed in the time of coronavirus. So tasteless, but very transparent.”
Taylor Swift instagram
For several months, Taylor has been at odds with Braun and Scott Borchetta after the high-powered music executives obtained the rights to her first six album masters.
“I spent 10 years of my life trying rigorously to purchase my masters outright and was then denied that opportunity, and I just don’t want that to happen to another artist if I can help it,” the Grammy winner told Billboard about her decision to vocalize the behind-the-scenes drama. “I want to at least raise my hand and say, ‘This is something that an artist should be able to earn back over the course of their deal—not as a renegotiation ploy—and something that artists should maybe have the first right of refusal to buy.'”
Braun, who manages Swift’s pop music peers like Justin Bieber, Demi Lovato and Ariana Grande, has said he and his family received death threats because of the publicized feud and called for an end to the back and forth.
“To be frank, I was shocked and disheartened to hear that my presence in the Big Machine deal caused you so much pain as the handful of times we have actually met I have always remembered them being pleasant and respectful,” he wrote on social media in November. “Knowing what I know now all I have wanted to do is rectify the situation. I’m open to ALL possibilities.”
Swift has also since vowed to re-record and release her masters.
E! News has reached out to Big Machine Records for comment.