Taylor Swift confirmed a report Monday that her music catalogue has been sold to a private equity group without her knowledge or consent — the second time it has been sold in two years — dashing her hopes of regaining control over her music since it was controversially acquired by music mogul Scooter Braun last year, something she described at the time as her “worst case scenario.”
Variety, who first reported the story, say the deal is believed to be worth more than $300 million, with Swift confirming that Shamrock Holdings had “bought 100% of my music, videos, and album art” from Braun.
In a statement shared to Twitter and Instagram on Monday, said she had initially welcomed the prospect of working with Shamrock, before discovering that the agreement meant that Braun and his company, Ithaca Holdings, which acquired her catalogue last year would “continue to receive many years of future financial reward” from her master recordings, something she “cannot currently entertain.”
Swift also shared a letter she wrote to Shamrock Holdings, in which she said she has already begun re-recording her old music, something she acknowledges will “diminish the value” of Shamrock’s investment, and a move she announced she announced last August.
In a highly publicised move, Braun’s Ithaca Holdings acquired Swift’s work by buying her former record label, Big Machine—which owns the rights to her first six albums— in 2019 for roughly the same price as it is now selling Swift’s catalogue. Swift vehemently opposed the acquisition, and accused Braun of “bullying” and attempting to “dismantle” her “musical legacy.” Swift has been trying to re-acquire the rights to her music ever since, but said that Braun’s team would not even enter negotiations unless she signed “an ironclad NDA stating I would never say another word” about Braun “unless it was positive”.”
In September, and in the midst of his own fight with record label Universal Music Group, Kanye West pledged on Twitter that he would help Swift get her masters back in what appeared to be an olive branch in the two artists’ tense relationship.