Aside from a few likes and reposts, music manager Scooter Braun has been silent in the face of accusations from Taylor Swift that he bullied her during her most controversial years. Swift wrote a long Tumblr post lamenting Braun's acquisition of Big Machine Records earlier this month, which means he now owns all her masters up until her switch to Universal Music Group (UMG) in late 2018. Back and forth continues about the specifics of Swift's predicament, but Braun, for one, isn't commenting on the tension in a new interview with Billboard.
Braun, along with Big Machine founder Scott Borchetta, spoke to the outlet about the $300 million deal, and while they shied away from the Taylor Swift controversy, her name wasn't entirely unmentioned.
Back in 2010, Justin Bieber opened for Swift in Foxborough, Mass. where Braun first met Borchetta. Braun recounted this meeting fondly, saying "Everyone at Big Machine — Taylor was kind, Scott was kind — everyone was kind to me and Justin when we were doing that show, and you don’t forget those things. I never forgot that, and we started a friendship."
It was this moment almost ten years ago that lit the spark for this deal, which Braun says is just “the first move of many in building an ecosystem that allows artists to go after their dreams.”
The article breaks down Swift's options, none of which she's likely to pursue. According to the outlet, Swift's publisher (Sony/ATV) still gives her approval over the use of her music, meaning she could block this power duo from allowing her songs to be used in commercials, film, or television shows. However, that would hurt her financially, and Swift's post was less about her options and more a warning for young female artists who might end up in a similar contract.
As for Braun and Borchetta's plans, they want to "cut a wider swath through the noise," and rethink how music is marketed in this new digital world — with or without Swift's support.