The Truth Behind the Re-release of Taylor Swift’s Albums

Signing a record deal with a major label at fifteen years old sounds like a dream come true. Taylor Swift, however, found out the hard way that things do not always work out as we imagine.

In 2006, Swift was signed to Big Machine Records, and she remained under this contract until 2018, during which time she wrote and produced six albums. When Swift’s deal ended, Big Machine Record Label, along with all of Swift’s masters (the original recordings of her music) were sold to Scooter Braun, a well-known record executive and manager. Later, in November 2020, Braun sold Swift’s masters to an investment firm for around $300 million. Swift and her team were not informed about the sale of her music.

“I do not think it was her fault,” said freshman Emma Mancuso. “Swift’s youth and inexperience were exploited.”

Swift tweeted on Nov. 16, 2020 that she has been trying to reclaim her masters from Braun throughout the past year. The tweet read, “I was hopeful and open to the possibility of a partnership with Shamrock, but Scooter’s participation is a non-starter for me.” Braun’s team wanted Taylor to sign a non-disclosure agreement (NDA), which would require Swift to speak only positively about Braun. Taylor declined the offer. Then, Swift got a letter from Shamrock Holdings saying that they purchased all of her music from Braun; Swift learned that Braun would still be able to profit off all of Swift’s music for years to come. With this realization, Swift decided to re-record all her old music that was stolen from her. She was determined to own the music she devoted her entire career to creating.

Swift is now signed to the Universal Music Group and has already re-recorded two out of the six albums. Over the past year, she re-released her album Fearless and more recently, Red. Swift has over 54 million monthly listeners on Spotify alone and is popular around the world. Though the events of her previous record deal were a great setback, Swift showed she is able to rise above any challenge thrown her way.

Freshman Gianna Longo said, “When artists are young, they are particularly vulnerable to labels that don’t have their best interests at heart.” 

Swift has been called a liar by millions of people, including Borchetta, her ex-manager, and the person that stole her masters from her without her knowledge. “I mean who reads the fine print on things? Plus, Swift was very young when she became popular,” argued senior Lexi Capitali. 

 Swift has been bashed for years for writing about her past relationships in songs, but this did not stop her from continuing to write about them. Swift does what she wants, whether she is backed by people or not.