The American Music Awards took place Sunday night (11/22) and Taylor Swift won big, taking home the Artist of the Year award. However, the singer was not there to accept the award in person, explaining in her virtual acceptance speech that she was busy at the studio re-recording her old music.
“The reason I’m not there tonight is I’m actually re-recording all of my old music in the studio where we originally recorded it,” she said in a video played at the award show. “It’s been amazing, and I can’t wait for you to hear it.”
Swifts decision to re-record her former albums comes after long and arduous battle over the sale of her masters. In June 2019, former Big Machine Label Group owner Scott Borchetta sold the label, which Swift was signed to prior to 2018, to music manger Scooter Braun. This sale included the masters of all the music Swift recorded with the label. She then announced plans to re-record all her old music, so the music would essentially belong to her, on CBS This Morning in August 2019. Now, in November 2020, Braun has sold her masters to investment fund Shamrock Holdings, blocking the singer from buying them yet again.
“Scooter’s team wanted me to sign an ironclad NDA stating I would never say another word about Scooter Braun unless it was positive, before we could even look at the financial records of BMLG (which is always the first step in a purchase of this nature),” she wrote on Twitter about the sale. “I would have to sign a document that would silence me forever before I could even have a chance to bid on my own work. My legal team said that this is absolutely NOT normal, and they’ve never seen an NDA like this presented unless it was to silence an assault accuser by paying them off. He would never even quote my team a price. These master recordings were not for sale to me.”
Now that the ownership of her own music has eluded her twice, Swift seems to be making good on the promise to re-record all her old music. While it’s unclear when this long project will be finished, fans can officially be looking forward to new (old) Taylor Swift music soon.