Taylor Swift announced today that she would be signing a multi-year deal with Universal Music Group, which means a departure from Big Machine, who has represented her since 2006 when she first came out with music. The move in itself is not that remarkable but for the fact that Swift is using her clout as one of the biggest artists on earth to change the way that all artists signed to Universal get paid (plus she owns her masters). Read her full statement below:
I’m ecstatic to announce that my musical home will be Republic Records and Universal Music Group. Over the years, Sir Lucian Grainge and Monte Lipman have been such incredible partners. It’s so thrilling to me that they, and the UMG team, will be my label family going forward. It’s also incredibly exciting to know that I’ll own all of my master recordings that I make from now on. It’s really important to me to see eye to eye with a label regarding the future of our industry. I feel so motivated by new opportunities created by the streaming world and the ever changing landscape of our industry.. I also feel strong that streaming was founded on and continues to thrive based on the magic created by artists, writers, and producers.
There was one condition that meant more to me than any other deal point. As part of my new contract with Universal Music Group, I asked that any sale of their Spotify shares result in a distribution of money to their artists, non-recoupable. They have generously agreed to this, at what they believe will be much better terms than paid out previously by other major labels. I see this as a sign that we are headed towards positive change for creators – a goal I’m never going to stop trying to help achieve, in whatever ways I can. I’m so happy to have Sir Lucian Grainge as a partner in these efforts.
I want to express by heartfelt thanks to Scott Borchetta for believing in me as a 14-year-old and for guiding me through over a decade of work that I will always be so proud of. I’m extremely grateful to get to do what I love, especially with the people I’ve been fortunate enough to work with. The best thing I’ve been lucky enough to receive is the dedication, trust, and loyalty of the fans who have cared about the words and melodies I’ve written. My biggest goal moving forward is to make you proud. I’m so excited. I can’t wait to show you what I’m making next.