“@taylorswift13 just a thought, U should go in & re-record all the songs that U don’t own the masters on exactly how U did them but put brand new art & some kind of incentive so fans will no longer buy the old versions,” she wrote on twitter.
The Grammy award-winning singer went on to say that she would even purchase Swift’s re-released music if only “to prove a point.”
While Clarkson’s advice may seem like wishful thinking to some, a few artists have re-released their music under similar circumstances in the past. 80’s rock band Def Leppard refused to allow its longtime label Universal Music to use any of its original recordings for anything other than physical products after the band members felt that they were being shortchanged on the digital value of their hits. Soon after, the band began re-releasing replicas of their past music to spite the label, igniting a similar discussion about artists and the ownership rights over their music.
However, it’s unlikely that Swift’s contract features the same favorable terms that Def Leppard obtained — an addendum to the band’s initial agreement gave it approval over how its music was used and sold. In fact, most major-label contracts specifically stipulate re-recording restrictions, disallowing any such re-records for years after the artist’s deal expires.
Clarkson joins a number of celebrities who have come out in support of Swift, following her recent imbroglio with Scooter Braun and his acquisition of Big Machine Records – the label which held the rights to her entire catalog up through 2017’s “Reputation.” Following the deal, Swift called Braun a “manipulative bully,” saying that she was shocked to first learn of the transfer of her work after the deal had already been made.
However, others have been less understanding. Justin Bieber came to the defense of Braun, criticizing Swift for “crossing a line” with her public reaction, and Big Machine’s own Scott Borchetta fired back at Swift for insinuating that she was never able to purchase back the rights to her master recordings.