From her first album “Taylor Swift” to “Lover,” Taylor Swift continues to make her mark on the music industry.
Taylor Swift got an early birthday gift.
Swift – who earned five No. 1 albums along with countless accolades in the decade – acknowledged the evolution of being a woman in the music industry, the good and the bad.
“Lately, there has been a new shift that has affected me personally and that I feel is a potentially harmful force in our industry. And as your resident loud person, I feel the need to bring it up,” Swift said.
The singer directly addressed her public spat with music executive Scooter Braun, who owns the masters to her first six albums after buying Big Machine Label Group.
“The unregulated world of private equity coming in and buying up our music as if it’s real estate. … This just happened to me without my approval, consultation or consent,” Swift said. “After I was denied the chance to purchase my music outright, my entire catalog was sold to Scooter Braun’s Ithaca Holdings.”
Swift said Braun didn’t contact her to discuss the sale before it happened. She feels “fairly certain he knew exactly how I would feel about it.”
“To this day, none of these investors have bothered to contact me … on their investment in me, to ask how I might feel about the new owner of my art,” Swift added. “The music I wrote, the videos I created, the photos of me, my handwriting, my album designs.”
As for the people defending Braun? Swift said: “The definition of the toxic male privilege in our industry is people saying, ‘But he’s always been nice to me,’ when I’m raising valid concerns about artists and their rights to own their music.”
She continued: “Of course (Braun’s) nice to you. If you are in this room, you have something he needs.”
Through the difficult time and ensuing legal battle, Swift said she was uplifted by “the women in our industry who would have my back and show me the most vocal support.”
“I will never, ever forget it, like ever,” she said.
Later in the night, Billie Eilish was crowned 2019 Woman of the Year, the youngest musician to ever receive the honor, just days ahead of her 18th birthday.
Previous recipients include Ariana Grande (2018), Selena Gomez (2017), Madonna (2016), Lady Gaga (2015) and Swift, who earned the honor in 2014 and 2011, the only female artist to receive the honor twice.
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