The 29-year-old Grammy winner who was named Billboard’s Woman of the Decade recently opened up to the outlet about making the creative switch and explained how pop “is a completely different world.”
Her varying experiences came up after Swift initially spoke about how she’s lent a helping hand to up-and-coming artists over the years, giving them advice on how to navigate the industry.
“… I’ve had several upheavals of somehow not being what I should be,” the “Lover” songstress said. “And this happens to women in music way more than men. That’s why I get so many phone calls from new artists out of the blue — like, ‘Hey, I’m getting my first wave of bad press, I’m freaking out, can I talk to you?’ And the answer is always yes!”
“I’m talking about more than 20 people who have randomly reached out to me,” she added, saying that she takes it as “a compliment because it means that they see what has happened over the course of my career, over and over again.”
When then asked if she’s ever had someone like that to reach out to, Swift said she really hasn’t.
“Not really, because my career has existed in lots of different neighborhoods of music,” she explained. “I had so many mentors in country music. Faith Hill was wonderful. She would reach out to me and invite me over and take me on tour, and I knew that I could talk to her.”
Swift continued: “Crossing over to pop is a completely different world. Country music is a real community, and in pop I didn’t see that community as much. Now there is a bit of one between the girls in pop — we all have each other’s numbers and text each other — but when I first started out in pop it was very much you versus you versus you.”
“We didn’t have a network, which is weird because we can help each other through these moments when you just feel completely isolated,” she added.
Swift, who has since released her 2017 record “Reputation” and her most recent album “Lover,” said she hopes those barriers are being broken down now.
“I also hope people can call it out, [like] if you see a Grammy prediction article, and it’s just two women’s faces next to each other and feels a bit gratuitous. No one’s going to start out being perfectly educated on the intricacies of gender politics,” she explained. “The key is that people are trying to learn, and that’s great. No one’s going to get it perfect, but, God, please try.”
During the interview, Swift also discussed artist rights.
The star has been in a public feud with Scott Borchetta, the head of her former label, Big Machine Records, and Scooter Braun — whose Ithaca Holdings acquired Big Machine Label Group — over her master recordings.
“We have a long way to go,” Swift said about the terms of record deals in general. “I think that we’re working off of an antiquated contractual system. We’re galloping toward a new industry but not thinking about recalibrating financial structures and compensation rates, taking care of producers and writers.”
“We need to think about how we handle master recordings, because this isn’t it,” she continued. “When I stood up and talked about this, I saw a lot of fans saying, ‘Wait, the creators of this work do not own their work, ever?’ I spent 10 years of my life trying rigorously to purchase my masters outright and was then denied that opportunity, and I just don’t want that to happen to another artist if I can help it.”
“I want to at least raise my hand and say, ‘This is something that an artist should be able to earn back over the course of their deal — not as a renegotiation ploy — and something that artists should maybe have the first right of refusal to buy.’ God, I would have paid so much for them! Anything to own my work that was an actual sale option, but it wasn’t given to me,” Swift claimed.
For Borchetta’s part, he has previously claimed that there have been terms negotiated for her to purchase her masters, which Swift allegedly declined.
“Thankfully, there’s power in writing your music,” Swift added. “Every week, we get a dozen synch requests to use ‘Shake It Off’ in some advertisement or ‘Blank Space’ in some movie trailer, and we say no to every single one of them. And the reason I’m rerecording my music next year is because I do want my music to live on. I do want it to be in movies, I do want it to be in commercials. But I only want that if I own it.”
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