Republic Records to Serve as Swift’s U.S. Label
Taylor Swift, one of the music industry’s most creatively and commercially successful artists in history, signed a global recording agreement with Universal Music Group (UMG), the world leader in music-based entertainment. Under the multi-year agreement, UMG will serve as the exclusive worldwide recorded music partner for Swift and UMG’s Republic Records will serve as her label partner in the U.S.
The multi-album agreement, effective immediately, deepens the relationship between Swift and UMG and builds upon the enormous success she achieved with longtime label home, Big Machine Records — the label whose long-term strategic alliance with Republic Records first brought Swift into the UMG family. A ten-time Grammy winner distinguished as the youngest-ever recipient of the Grammy for Album of the Year — and the first female solo artist to win the award twice — is the only artist in history with four albums with sales of more than one million copies in their first week of release (2010’s Speak Now, 2012’s Red, 2014’s 1989 and 2017’s Reputation), respectively.
Swift had been with Big Machine since 2006, but began seeking a new label home after he contract expired this year. Swift shared the news via Instagram, outlining some of the terms she said were must-haves in her contract.
“I’m ecstatic to announce that my musical home will be Republic Records and Universal Music Group,” the country-turned-pop-star published on social media. “Over the years, Sir Lucian Grainge and Monte Lipman have been such incredible partners. It’s so thrilling to me that they, and the UMG team, will be my label family moving forward. It’s also incredibly exciting to know that I’ll own all of my master recordings that I make from now on. It’s really important to me to see eye to eye with a label regarding the future of our industry. I feel so motivated by new opportunities created by the streaming world and that ever changing landscape of our industry… I also feel strongly that streaming was founded on and continues to thrive based on the music created by artists, writers, and producers.
She continues, “There was one condition that meant more to me than any other deal point. As part of my new contract with Universal Music Group, I asked that any sale of their Spotify shares result in a distribution of money to their artists, non-recoupable. They have generously agreed to this at what they believe will be much better terms than paid out previously by other major labels. I see this as a sign that we are headed towards positive change for creators – a goal I’m never going to stop trying to help achieve, in whatever ways I can. I’m so happy to have Sir Lucian Grainge as a partner in these efforts.
She concludes, “I want to express my heartfelt thanks to Scott Borchetta for believing in me as a 14-year-old and for guiding me through over a decade of work that I will always be so proud of. I’m extremely grateful to get to do what I love, especially with the people I’ve been fortunate enough to work with. The best thing I’ve been lucky enough to receive is the dedication, trust, and loyalty of the fans who have cared about the words and melodies I’ve written. I’m so excited. I can’t wait to show you what I’m making next.”
“Few artists in history approach Taylor Swift’s combination of massive global hits and creative brilliance. She is so multi-talented, she can achieve anything. I have such enormous respect for Taylor, in particular for her use of her hard-earned influence to promote positive change,” states Sir Lucian Grainge, Chairman and CEO of Universal Music Group. “Because of her commitment to her fellow artists, not only did she want to partner with a company that understood her creative vision and had the resources and expertise to execute globally on her behalf, she also sought a partner whose approach to artists was aligned with hers. With these shared beliefs, there is so much we can accomplish together, and all of us at UMG are enormously proud to be embarking on the next chapter of her career alongside her.”
“Taylor has not only captured the imagination of an entire generation, but has also redefined the paradigm of the modern music industry,” comments Monte Lipman, founder and CEO, of Republic Records. “Her commitment to songwriting and performing has earned her the respect of her peers and millions of adoring fans around the world. I can only imagine what Taylor is capable of achieving in the years to come, both culturally and creatively. I’m beyond thrilled to create an alliance with Republic Records and the incomparable Taylor Swift.”
Swift’s critically-adored new album, Reputation, was the biggest selling album of 2017 and No. 1 in over 111 countries on iTunes’ sales charts upon release. Swift’s chart-topping first single, “Look What You Made Me Do,” broke multiple records within hours of its release. With over ten million streams, it was the most-streamed song in a one-day, the lyric video for “Look What You Made Me Do” broke the standing record with over 19 million views, while the music video shattered the original most viewed video (28 million) record with 43.2 million views in 24 hours. Her current single “Delicate” was the latest song off reputation to top the Pop, Hot AC and AC charts.