Second Funkiest White Man in America
Turns out it won't be very hard for her to do this, and she'll probably put Braun out of business with respect to Taylor Swift songs. She may control which version is licensed - hers or Braun's - and could instigate a bidding war for rights, resulting in forcing Braun to keep lowering his price if he wants his version licensed.
Keep in mind that if that happens, Swift is the clear winner. Any songs that Braun wins the low bid to license means he's getting far less than he normally would, while any re-recorded songs licensed from Swift is just found money for her.
Braun's best move is to try to license as much as he possibly can in the next year, before Swift can offer her re-recorded stuff.
Experts said most standard music contracts have a clause disallowing an artist from re-recording their own songs for a set period of time. According to Swift, that period will end next fall for her first five albums.
“My contract says that starting November 2020, so next year, I can record albums one through five all over again. I’m very excited about it,” Swift said Thursday on “Good Morning America.” “I just think that artists deserve to own their work. I just feel very passionately about that.” <snip>
There are two different copyrights in play here: that of the song composition (the musical arrangement and lyrics), and that of the recording itself. And “the copyright for the song is compensated completely separately from the compensation for the song recording,” said David Israelite, president of the National Music Publishers Association. And “because Taylor writes her own songs, she can do this without much trouble. If there was someone else writing her songs, you’d have to go through a different process.” <snip>
On one hand, Swift’s team should be able to exert some control over her original songs. Remember the Dylan example: A licensee would need to license the song from him (for the song) and the Hendrix estate (for the actual recording). In that scenario, Swift could effectively control which version of the song is licensed, the old or the new.
On the other hand, it could potentially devalue each song by creating inverse bidding wars. If, for example, Toyota wanted to use “Shake It Off” in a commercial and there are two versions of the song, the company might attempt to license both, choosing the cheaper version. “If there are two different versions, a (movie studio) could actually negotiate with both versions over which price they want to pay,” Israelite said. “Whichever one they agree to, that’s the version they’ll use, and that’s the only one that makes any money.”