The superstar publicly reignited her battle with the heads of her former label, saying it is threatening to bar her from going through with an upcoming performance and Netflix documentary over her plans to re-record her early albums.
Taylor Swift said on Thursday that she may not perform at the American Music Awards (AMA) and may have to put other projects, including a forthcoming Netflix documentary on hold because the men who own her old recordings won’t allow her to play her songs.
“Right now my performance at the AMAs, the Netflix documentary and any other recorded events I am planning to play until November 2020 are a question mark,” Swift said on Twitter and Instagram.
Swift said she had planned to play a medley of her hits when she’s named Artist of the Decade at the American Music Awards on November 24, but the men who own the music, Scooter Braun and Scott Borchetta, are calling the television performance an illegal re-recording.
“I just want to be able to perform MY OWN music. That’s it,” Swift said. “I’ve tried to work out this out privately through my team but have not been able to resolve anything.”
The 29-year-old singer-songwriter has loudly spoken out against her old master recordings falling into the hands of the music manager Braun, who bought them by acquiring Borchetta’s Big Machine Label Group in June.
Swift has used the sale and its aftermath to publicly advocate for the rights of artists and to further a feud with the two men.
Swift said in the posts that Borchetta has told her he will allow the projects to go forward if she drops plans to record copycat versions of her older songs next year, which Swift says she plans to do and has the legal right to, and if she stops her public trashing of the two men.
“The message being sent to me is very clear,” Swift said. Basically, be a good little girl and shut up. Or you’ll be punished.”
Messages seeking comment sent to representatives for Braun, Borchetta and the AMAs were not immediately returned.
Swift called on her legion of fans to put pressure on Braun and Borchetta to allow her performance and other projects to go forward.
That ignited social media, with the hashtags "IStandWithTaylor" and "FreeTaylor" trending worldwide on Twitter.
She also urged her fellow artists, some of whom include Ariana Grande and Justin Bieber are managed by Braun, to speak out and speak to him.
Swift said she’s especially asking for help from the Carlyle Group, the private equity firm that financed the sale.
The Netflix documentary, which has chronicled the last few years of her life, was previously unannounced.
“This isn’t the way I planned on telling you this news,” Swift said.
"Netflix has created a documentary about my life for the past few years. Scott and Scooter have declined the use of my older music or performance footage for this project, even though there is no mention of either of them or Big Machine Records anywhere in the film," Swift said in a Tumblr post.
The owner of coveted masters –– one-of-a-kind source material used to create vinyls, CDs and digital –– is able to dictate how songs are reproduced and sold.
Swift wrote she feels "very strongly that sharing what is happening to me could change the awareness level for other artists and potentially help them avoid a similar fate."