Scooter Braun says Taylor Swift ‘was kind’ to him years before row over his $300M purchase of her catalog
Scooter Braun says he had a positive first impression of Taylor Swift.
The 38-year-old music manager has been in a public feud with the pop star since spending $300 million last month to acquire her original label Big Machine Label Group from owner Scott Borchetta, leaving him as the owner of her master recordings.
Braun first crossed paths with Swift when his client Justin Bieber was her opening act on a few shows on her Fearless Tour, which spanned from 2009 until 2010.
The latest: Scooter Braun, 38, says he had a positive first impression of Taylor Swift, 29, amid a public feud with the pop star after he spent $300 million to acquire her original label Big Machine Label Group, leaving him as the owner of her master recordings
Braun told Billboard, ‘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.’
Braun, who spoke to the outlet in a joint interview with Borchetta, added: ‘I never forgot that, and we started a friendship.’
Following Braun’s acquisition of Swift’s material – bought via his company Ithaca Holdings – the songstress said in a Tumblr blog that Braun had been ‘manipulative’ and ‘bullying’ in his past interactions with her.
‘My musical legacy is about to lie in the hands of someone who tried to dismantle it,’ she said.
Let’s make a deal: Braun and Big Machine Label Group owner Scott Borchetta posed together in a Montecito, California home after their landmark deal
Shake on it: Braun said his acquisition of Borchetta’s company saved people’s jobs
Neither Braun or Borchetta would directly address Swift’s criticism, but Braun defended his purchase of the company, noting that people’s jobs were saved with the organization headed in his hands.
‘If Scott sold the company to someone else, then they would have done what usually happens, which is you take the catalogs, you strip it all down, people get laid off – and that’s not right, those people put us in this position,’ he said.
Braun said the deal was ‘the first move of many in building an ecosystem that allows artists to go after their dreams.’
Taylor’s side: Swift said of Braun’s acquisition of her catalog, ‘My musical legacy is about to lie in the hands of someone who tried to dismantle it’
Gearing up: Swift will release her next album Lover next month
Borchetta said that he and Braun had been in talks for years to form a business alliance: ‘There was a conversation a few years back and it never really got off the ground, but it was fascinating to me even then.
‘There were a lot of things we would throw back and forth – we ended up doing something together with Rascal Flatts and Justin Bieber – and then it got very serious last fall.’
Swift’s next album Lover – her first on her new deal with Universal Music, and her seventh studio album overall – comes out August 23.