Ahead of her return to the AMA stage, Twain weighed-in on fellow performer Taylor Swift‘s claim that Scooter Braun and her former record label had banned her from singing her older songs at the event. I don’t know a lot about the details of that, but I’m a big supporter of Taylor, she said during an interview with USA Today. The legendary singer, 54, admitted she doesn’t have any inside information on the controversy, but made a point to reveal that she likes to side with the artists when it comes to song ownership. I haven’t had a chance to talk to her about it and I don’t really know where everybody is coming from,’ she added. But I’ll always support the artist and their access to their own music. It seems a bit ridiculous to not have that. Her take: ‘I’ll always support the artist and their access to their own music. Braun, 38, purchased Swift’s first label, Big Machine Records, which in turn gave him the rights to the original masters to her first six albums, which she had been trying to buy back for years.
Incensed that she didn’t have a chance to buy back her work, Swift has taken to social media to call him an ‘incessant, manipulative bully’ in a Tumblr post. Just this week, Braun confirmed a report from TMZ that revealed Swift fans were sending death threats to his offices. Shortly thereafter, Swift was given permission to sing any of her songs at the AMAs, where she’s slated to receive the Artist of the Decade Award. The list of performers also includes Selena Gomez, Camila Cabello, Billie Eilish, the Jonas Brothers, Christina Aguilera & A Great Big World, Green Day, Post Malone featuring Travis Scott and Ozzy Osbourne and Toni Braxton. Both Twain and Swift are slated to perform a medley of their greatest hits respectively. With sales of over 100 million records over her illustrious career, Twain is the best-selling female artist in country music history. The 2019 American Music Awards goes off this Sunday, November 24, at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, beginning at 8 p.m.
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Purists of soul and country music often lament the state of contemporary music. They complain that the quality of the music is now so far from the essential aspects, accusing the artists of selling out to such an extent that the music no longer has the integrity that made it special and a uniquely authentic manifestation of an American cultural identity. The fact that acts like Taylor Swift and Lady Antebellum, Janelle Monae and Usher open for major shows like the Grammy Awards and the American Music Awards and reach the precious prime-time viewership signifies the distance of the journey that music has taken from the folk roots. Christmas specials now move beyond the typical quasi-jazzy Michael Buble shows to include country Christmas shows hosted by artists like Sugarland’s Jennifer Nettles. On every major television singing competition, a country star sits comfortably in a judge’s seat: Blake Shelton on The Voice, Keith Urban on American Idol, and Brad Paisley on Rising Star. As rooted as soul and country music are in the folk heritage of the American South, the journey to mass audiences has necessitated a series of consistent compromises and creativity that has landed country and soul artists in the lucrative marketing bins of popular music. Explaining this process, Harper writes that “the ‘pop’ designation is not easy to decode.
Chapter 2 of Taylor Swift‘s fight for musical freedom is officially upon us. And now, her former label and current publicist are weighing in. ICYMI, Swift took to social media on November 14 to specifically call out industry executive Scooter Braun and Big Machine’s Scott Borchetta -- the current owners of the back catalog of her first six albums -- for allegedly blocking her from performing a medley of her work live at the American Music Awards on Sunday, November 24. She also said the pair blocked efforts to use her older material and performance footage in an upcoming Swift-centric Netflix documentary. She also called upon fans and industry peers to let Borchetta and Braun know that what they’re doing is wrong. But Swifties woke up this morning (November 15) to Big Machine’s official response -- one that claims Swift’s statements are unequivocally “false.” “As Taylor Swift‘s partner for over a decade, we were shocked to see her tumblr statements yesterday based on false information,” the letter read. While Big Machine cannot legally bar Swift from performing her past hits live, the label’s response does not directly address Swift’s point that a recorded performance -- such as the one she’d been planning for the AMAs -- wouldn’t be allowed “because that would be re-recording my music before I’m allowed to next year,” as she wrote. Big Machine’s response to Swift’s claims didn’t end there. The label heads went on to mention the “millions of dollars” the singer allegedly owes them, saying that they’ve “worked diligently” to reach a solution with Swift. The label’s letter closed by addressing the pop star directly. Swifties around the world are not pleased with Big Machine’s response -- and that includes Swift’s publicist, Tree Paine. Paine took to Twitter following Big Machine’s statement to provide receipts of her own -- receipts that hope to prove Swift was telling the truth all along.