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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Musicians entitled to own their work

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November 20, 2019 | Dang Le | campus editor

Taylor Swift shared on social media she couldn’t perform any of her songs before her “Lover” album. The decision was made by her previous record label’s executive Scott Borchetta and its new owner Scooter Braun.

Back in August, Swift announced she was denied the right to purchase all her previous masters and publishing rights to her songs by Borchetta, who eventually sold Big Machine Records to Braun, her peer-turned-adversary.

Since then, Swift has announced that she would re-record all her albums, which are scheduled to release in 2020. 

The men were unhappy with her decision and decided to prohibit her from using her songs for her medley performance at an upcoming award show and on a Netflix documentary.

The public was skeptical of Swift’s recent post as she released a soundtrack for her upcoming movie just eight hours after.

However, people seem to forget an artist’s work is being stolen, and she can’t do anything about it.

This is not just any unknown artist. This is Taylor Swift, who is billed artist of the decade by multiple publications. With the amount of power and money she has, Swift still cannot win against the corrupt music industry.

Based on reports, Swift can’t perform six out of seven studio albums, one of which is self-written.

Since the 80s, Michael Jackson obtained and gained profit from The Beatles’ masters. Similarly, it took Prince 18 years to settle a deal to regain his catalog’s ownership in 2014.

While it is understandable that record labels want to own publishing rights because they have invested money in these artists, every artist should have their rights to purchase their masters once they decide to part ways with their record label.

Swift’s legal team has sent out emails explaining the situation to The New York Times and The Guardian, and the men have backtracked and confirmed to TMZ that Swift can now perform her songs at the award show.

Artists should be able to negotiate the right to own their creativity no matter the circumstances. In the end, no fame is worth being anyone’s puppet.

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