After several years of feuding with Taylor Swift, Scooter Braun is ready to tell his side of the story.
In a recent interview with NPR, the record executive spoke openly about the feud.
If you somehow escaped all the drama, Braun’s company purchased Swift’s former label, Big Machine Records, in 2019. As a result, Swift’s first six albums were owned by the record executive. Upon hearing the news, Swift responded by accusing him of bullying her.
In a recent interview with NPR, Braun was asked if he could go back in time and handle the acquisition differently. In addition, he acknowledged that he would change something if he could.
“Yes, I would have,” said the 41-year-old.”I learned an important lesson from that.”
Braun said he was under a nondisclosure agreement (NDA) when he negotiated with Big Machine Records, and that limited the amount he could reveal about the deal.
“I was under a very strict NDA with the gentleman who owned it, and I couldn’t tell any artist. I wasn’t allowed to, I wasn’t legally allowed to,” he said. “What I told him was, ‘Hey, if any of the artists want to come back and buy into this, you have to let me know.’”
According to Braun, who merged his Ithaca Holdings with BTS label owner HYBE for $1 billion in 2021, there was a lack of communication between him, Big Machine and its artists.
“Now Scooter has stripped me of my life’s work, that I wasn’t given an opportunity to buy,” she wrote. “Essentially, my musical legacy is about to lie in the hands of someone who tried to dismantle it.”
Braun said that “a lot of things got lost in translation” in Swift’s response in 2022.
“I think that when you have a conflict with someone, it’s very hard to resolve it if you’re not willing to have a conversation,” he added. “So, the regret I have there is that I made the assumption that everyone, once the deal was done, was going to have a conversation with me, see my intent, see my character and say, ‘Great. Let’s be in business together.’”
Braun said he learned the “important lesson” not to assume that artists will be fully on board to collaborate.
“I can’t put myself in a place of arrogance to think that someone would just be willing to have a conversation, be excited to work with me,” he said. “I don’t know these people.”
A year after the 2019 Swift conflict, Braun said he “didn’t appreciate how that all went down” and that he now sees how both sides were treated unfairly.
“I choose to look at it as a learning lesson, a growing lesson, and I wish everyone involved well,” he said. “I’m rooting for everyone to win because I don’t believe in rooting for people to lose.”
Bieber and former client Kanye West’s social media posts were alleged to have bullied Swift, as were leaks of sensitive information. According to Braun, Swift’s reaction was “very confusing and not based on any facts.”
Swift has begun rerecording her catalog following the loss of her master recordings to Braun. In the wake of the 2019 drama, Taylor released “Fearless (Taylor’s Version)” and “Red (Taylor’s Version).