On Thursday, Braun broke his months-long silence about his rift with Swift, which started in June when his company Ithaca Holdings purchased her former record label, the Big Machine Label Group, including her music. During that conversation at the 2019 Entertainment Industry Conference, he said — without uttering Swift’s name — that he’s a big believer of sitting down face-to-face and working out “miscommunications” — and not feuding over social media.
However, after saying that social media wasn’t the right forum for these types of discussions, he broke his own rule and reached out to Swift online. That’s because he said his wife, Yael, “received a phone call threatening the safety of our children.” He also shared a screenshot of another threatening message they received online.
In his Instagram message to Swift, Braun said he would “like to find a resolution” to their rift and is “open to ALL possibilities.” However, because he has reached out to her via multiple channels and has heard nothing back, he wondered if she has “no interest in ever resolving the conflict.” He said that with “safety becoming a concern,” he is making a public plea “for us to come together” and promised to “make myself available whenever works.”
Braun also reiterated that Swift can sing whatever songs she wants at the American Music Awards this Sunday. He implored her to reach out before anyone “gets seriously hurt in the process.”
Here is the message directed to Swift in its entirety:
“Since your public statement last week there have been numerous death threats directed at my family. This morning I spoke out publicly for the first time saying I wouldn’t participate in a social media war. However, I came home tonight to find my wife had received a phone call threatening the safety of our children as well as other threats seen above. I won’t go into the details of this past week. I have been at a loss. Thinking of my wife and children, my team and their families, I have gone through a range of emotions on how to deal with this. I write this now only after a deep breath and much reflection. I am certain there is no situation ever worth jeopardizing anyone’s safety.
“I assume this was not your intention but it is important that you understand that your words carry a tremendous amount of weight and that your message can be interpreted by some in different ways. While disappointed that you have remained silent after being notified by your attorney 4 days ago of these ongoing threats, I’m still hopeful we can fix this.
“We are living in a time of pointless violence and as a husband and father, I am concerned.
”This is a world filled with toxic division where people express their opinions over social media instead of having conversations in person. I want no part in that. To be frank I was shocked and disheartened to hear that my presence in the Big Machine deal caused you so much pain as the handful of times we have actually met I have always remembered them to be pleasant and respectful. Knowing what I know now all I have wanted to do is rectify the situation. I’m open to ALL possibilities. My attempts and calls to have an open discussion with you over the last 6 months have all been rejected. While some on your team and many of our mutual friends have tried to get you to the table, all have had no luck. It almost feels as if you have no interest in ever resolving the conflict. At this point, with safety becoming a concern I have no choice other than to publicly ask for us to come together and try to find a resolution. I have tried repeatedly through your representatives to achieve a solution but unfortunately, here we are. This game of telephone isn’t working.
”While I am frustrated with your accusations and respectfully disagree with many of your statements, it is important that I am clear—no artist should ever feel cornered or bullied. I have spent my entire career in service of creatives and artists, never the other way around. As the world now knows you can and should perform any song you would like at the AMAs. I have never and would never say otherwise. You do not need anyone’s permission to do so legally but I am stating it here clearly and publicly so there is no more debate or confusion.
”Moving forward I would like to find a resolution. I will make myself available whenever works for you. Many have told me that a meeting will never happen as this is not about truth or resolution but instead a narrative for you. I am hopeful that is not the case. I’m right here, ready to speak directly and respectfully. But if you would prefer to make large public statements while refusing to work towards resolving things amicably then I just pray that nobody gets seriously hurt in the process. I continue to wish you the best and hope we can resolve this.”
Swift has not yet publicly responded. Yahoo Entertainment has reached out to her spokesperson for comment and will update this story when we hear back.
Their feud flared up on Nov. 14 when Swift shared online that her former label was preventing her from singing her old music at the American Music Awards, where she’s being awarded the first-ever Artist of the Decade award. She also said that her former label was denying use of her recordings in an upcoming Netflix documentary about her career. Swift asked her fans to “let Scott Borchetta,” who heads Big Machine, “and Scooter Braun know how you feel about this.”
Don’t know what else to do pic.twitter.com/1uBrXwviTS— Taylor Swift (@taylorswift13) November 14, 2019
Big Machine responded with its own statement, saying they were “shocked” to hear Swift spread “false information.” It went on to say that “at no point did we say Taylor could not perform on the AMAs or block her Netflix special. In fact, we do not have the right to keep her from performing live anywhere. Since Taylor’s decision to leave Big Machine last fall, we have continued to honor all of her requests to license her catalog to third parties as she promotes her current record in which we do not financially participate.”
Days later, the label shared that they “informed Dick Clark Productions,” producers of the AMAs, “that they have agreed to grant all licenses of their artists’ performances to stream post-show and for re-broadcast on mutually approved platforms. It should be noted that recording artists do not need label approval for live performances on television or any other live media. Record label approval is only needed for contracted artists' audio and visual recordings and in determining how those works are distributed.”
The American Music Awards will air this Sunday and will be hosted by Ciara. Braun will not be in attendance for Swift’s big tribute.
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