Scooter Braun regrets how he handled his acquisition of Big Machine Music Group three years ago, a move that put him at odds with Taylor Swift and her army of fans. In a new interview with NPR’S Jay Williams, Braun declared: “I learned an important lesson from that.”
In 2019, Braun’s Ithaca Holdings acquired Scott Borchetta’s Big Machine Records for a reported $300 million. The deal left Braun with the rights to Swift’s first six albums. The singer went public with her frustration, claiming she was previously blocked from trying to buy her masters back. She made it clear she was not happy with Braun or Borchetta and the drama all played out in the public.
“When I did that deal that you’re referring to with Big Machine, I was under a very strict NDA with the gentleman who owned it, and I couldn’t tell any artist. I wasn’t allowed to. I wasn’t legally allowed to,” Braun told Williams.
“I was excited to work with every artist on the label. So when we finalized the deal, I started making phone calls to say, ‘Hey, I’m a part of this.’ And before I could even do that — I made four phone calls… all hell broke loose,” Braun added. “So I think a lot of things got lost in translation. I think that when you have a conflict with someone, it’s very hard to resolve it if you’re not willing to have a conversation.”
Braun continued, “So the regret I have there is that I made the assumption that everyone, once the deal was done, was going to have a conversation with me, see my intent, see my character and say, great, let’s be in business together. And I made that assumption with people that I didn’t know. And I learned an important lesson from that, that I can never make that assumption again. I can’t put myself in a place of, you know, arrogance to think that someone would just be willing to have a conversation and be excited to work with me. I don’t know these people.”
Braun, who works with Justin Bieber, Ariana Grande, Demi Lovato and J. Balvin, says he chooses to look at the fiasco as “a learning lesson, a growing lesson, and I wish everyone involved well.”
“And I’m rooting for everyone to win because I don’t believe in rooting for people to lose,” he concluded.
Braun ended up selling Big Machine less than two years later, reportedly for a hefty profit. He sold to HYBE, which is another company he’s part of, and maintains he did things differently. “I took 50 million of my own stock that I received, and I gave it to my employees and my artists,” he said.
It’s unclear if Swift has forgiven Braun and Borchetta — but she certainly has not forgotten. The superstar vowed to re-release all six albums she lost the rights to, and so far, she’s gifted fans with two: Fearless (Taylor’s Version) and Red (Taylor’s Version). Both achieved success all over again and there’s no indication she won’t make good on her promise to record the other four (Taylor Swift, Speak Now, 1989and Reputation).ORDER A COPY OF ROB’S NEW BEST SELLING BOOK! Called “America’s Number ONE Gossip Columnist” by The National Enquirer. Rob ‘Naughty But Nice’ Shuter breaks celebrity news every day on his website NaughtyGossip.com where he delivers all the dish about the stars we love in his naughty but nice signature style. You can also catch him co-hosting and breaking celebrity news on Good Day New York, The Today Show, The Talk, Wendy Williams Show, CNN, Extra and Z100’s ‘Elvis Duran.’ Previously, Rob was the Huffington Post’s only celebrity columnist and the former executive editor of OK! Magazine. Rob has also hosted his own Saturday night talk show on Mark Cuban’s channel and his own daily morning show, ‘The Gossip Table,’ on VH1! Breaking some of the biggest entertainment stories, including Jamie Lynn Spears’s pregnancy news, Britney’s first post-meltdown interview, Eva Longoria’s wedding, and baby exclusives for Jessica Alba, Tori Spelling and Mathew McConaughey’s tots, Rob always knows where to find the best scoop. Before Rob was one of the world’s most successful entertainment reporters, he was a publicist working for Jennifer Lopez, Alicia Keys, P. Diddy, Jessica Simpson and Jon Bon Jovi! Now he is bringing all this experience to his new show on I HEART MEDIA in his unique cheeky way, that is always a pinch and never a punch!