Why Scooter Braun Has "Regret" Over His Music Battle With Taylor Swift

Scooter Braun has realized all too well that actions have consequences.

More than three years after acquiring Big Machine Music Group—and the rights to Taylor Swift's first six albums—the music executive hasn't forgotten about the controversy that followed. But in a Sept. 27 interview with NPR's Jay Williams, Scooter said he wishes he could have handled some things differently.

"I learned an important lesson," he shared. "When I did that deal, I was under a very strict NDA with the gentleman who owned it, and I couldn't tell any artist. I wasn't allowed to. I wasn't legally allowed to."

Scooter continued, "I was excited to work with every artist on the label. So when we finalized the deal, I started making phone calls to say, ‘Hey, I'm a part of this.' And before I could even do that—I made four phone calls; I started to do those phone calls—all hell broke loose."

What he's likely referring to is the moment Taylor spoke out on social media explaining why the acquisition was what she described as "my worst case scenario."

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"I learned about Scooter Braun's purchase of my masters as it was announced to the world," she wrote. "All I could think about was the incessant, manipulative bullying I've received at his hands for years."

Scooter Braun, Taylor Swift
Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Amazon Studio

In November 2020, when Taylor said she attempted to enter into negotiations with Scooter to regain ownership of her master recordings, she accused his team of wanting her to sign an NDA that allegedly stated, "I would never say another word about Scooter Braun unless it was positive, before we could even look at the financial records of BMLG."

In his latest interview, Scooter shared his belief that a lot of things "got lost in translation."

"I think that when you have a conflict with someone, it's very hard to resolve it if you're not willing to have a conversation," he explained. "So the regret I have there is that I made the assumption that everyone, once the deal was done, was going to have a conversation with me, see my intent, see my character and say, great, let's be in business together. And I made that assumption with people that I didn't know."

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"I learned an important lesson from that, that I can never make that assumption again," Scooter added. "I can't put myself in a place of arrogance to think that someone would just be willing to have a conversation and be excited to work with me. I don't know these people."

Taylor Swift, 2022 MTV Video Music Awards, Arrivals
Arturo Holmes/FilmMagic

Scooter and Taylor, however, have ultimately crossed paths before the controversial music deal was ever done. In 2010, his artist Justin Bieber served as the opener for the "Shake It Off" singer's Fearless tour.

And in a 2019 interview with Billboard, Scooter reflected on how many people at Big Machine including Taylor made the experience so positive. "Everyone was kind to me and Justin when we were doing that show, and you don't forget those things," he shared. "I never forgot that, and we started a friendship."

While Scooter now says he's "going to move on" from the controversy, Taylor continues to deliver music for fans.

After her masters were sold, the singer began the process of re-recording her original albums. Since 2021, the Grammy winner has already rerecorded Fearless and Red (Taylor's Version).

In August, Taylor announced she will be releasing a new album titled Midnights in October.

E! News has reached out to Taylor's rep and Big Machine Music Group on the new interview but hasn't received a comment.

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