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Taylor Swift says ‘shameless greed’ is behind unauthorized album that dropped today

Swift slammed her former record label Big Machine on social media after being alerted by fans that an album of her live performances was being released without her permission

Taylor Swift arrives for the Sundance Film Festival premiere of her Netflix documentary “Miss Americana” at the Eccles Theatre in Park City on Thursday, Jan. 23, 2020.
Taylor Swift arrives for the Sundance Film Festival premiere of her Netflix documentary “Miss Americana” at the Eccles Theatre in Park City on Thursday, Jan. 23, 2020. Swift has slammed her former record label for releasing an unauthorized album of her live performances.
Laura Seitz, Deseret News

Taylor Swift’s ongoing battle with her former record label Big Machine heated up again on Thursday when the pop star took to social media to slam the company for “shameless greed” in releasing an album of live performances without her approval, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Swift wrote in an Instagram story that she had been alerted by fans that Big Machine was releasing an album of her live performances — a release she says she did not approve, according to THR.

“This recording is from a 2008 radio show performance I did when I was 18,” Swift wrote on Instagram, according to Variety. “Big Machine has listed the date as a 2017 release but they’re actually releasing it tonight at midnight.”

Instagram story from Taylor Swift on April 23.
Screenshot

The album, “Live From Clear Channel Stripped 2008,” was available on streaming services like Amazon and Spotify on Friday.

“I’m always honest with you guys about this stuff so I just wanted to tell you that this release is not approved by me,” Swift wrote on Instagram, according to Variety. “It looks to me like Scooter Braun and his financial backers, 23 Capital, Alex Soros and the Soros family and The Carlyle Group have seen the latest balance sheets and realized that paying $330 MILLION for my music wasn’t exactly a wise choice and they need money.”

However, an unnamed source that is “close” to Big Machine Label Group reportedly told People magazine that the album is not a new release.

“It was distributed via Target and others 12 years ago,” the source told People. “All that’s being done is taking music available through YouTube and Target since 2008 and distributing it to streaming services so fans can enjoy wherever they listen. This is standard practice.”

This is not the first time Swift has clashed with Big Machine and her former manager, Scooter Braun. Swift accused Braun of “manipulative bullying” after he struck a deal with Big Machine’s former head Scott Borchetta that gave Braun control of her master albums last year, according to People.

“I feel very strongly that sharing what is happening to me could change the awareness level for other artists and potentially help them avoid a similar fate,” Swift wrote at the time, according to THR. “The message being sent to me is very clear. Basically, be a good little girl and shut up. Or you’ll be punished. This is WRONG. Neither of these men had a hand in the writing of those songs. They did nothing to create the relationship I have with my fans.”