The American music industry has seen a revolution in recent months, relatively unnoticed by the public. Responsible for this is superstar Taylor Swift. When artists can no longer go on tour, the rights to their songs have become more valuable than ever. We recently saw that by a few spectacular deals in which stars sold the rights to corporations at huge sums. Taylor Swift, however, wanted the rights to their songs back. Her former record company refused to do so. So Swift resorted to a drug that Prince had threatened his label years earlier. He had not to implement his threat at that time, but Swift had no other choice.
Prince’s fight against his record label went so far that he publicly painted the word slave on his cheeks. The reason for this was simple. He also did not have his song rights. When he asked for it back, the music company refused. The musician then resorted to a trick. He threatened the managers that all of his previously released records would be re-recorded for tone and brought onto the market. “I only need a few weeks for this, and you know that,” he is supposed to have said at the time. The threat worked; the musician got his rights back. Taylor Swift, on the other hand, bit granite. So she went about realizing this significant announcement.
Old Became New
She signed her first record deal in 2005. By 2017 she had produced a total of six albums for her former record company. In 2019 she changed her partner. The former record company then sold the rights to the six records for $ 300 million. Swift responded promptly. She blocked the use of all songs for use in films or commercials. That means that the sold rights are now worthless in many areas. But the singer went one step further. She first re-recorded her 2008 album Fearless. That enables her to license the newly recorded songs herself. That puts the new rights holders under pressure and all other record companies in the music industry.
It is not for nothing that a struggle for the rights of musicians has been raging for decades. The Beatles, George Micheal and Prince were just the most famous examples of how the music industry had contractually secured the artists’ compositions’ rights repeatedly. On the other hand, Taylor Swift has positioned herself as a clever businesswoman who has now taken her career entirely into her own hands. As if that weren’t enough, the new recording also reached the top of the American charts. The singer managed to break an old Beatles record. Never before in history has an artist succeeded in becoming number 1 in the album charts with three different albums in such a short period. All of this happened in less than a year. Now the fans are curious to see whether the artist will record all the other old records again and leave the music industry out in the rain.