Taylor Swift denies Google deal is behind her leaving Spotify after Billy Bragg criticism

Representatives for the singer insist that quitting was her own decision

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The Independent Culture

Taylor Swift’s representatives have been forced to deny that an exclusive deal with Google is behind her leaving Spotify.

The pop star, 24, removed her entire collection of tracks from the streaming service earlier this month after arguing that musicians should not “undervalue their art” by letting fans listen to their songs for free.


But while many supported her decision, singer-songwriter Billy Bragg criticised it as “corporate power play” and claimed that fans would soon see Swift’s tunes on Google’s similar new service.

“On pulling her music from Spotify recently, [Swift] made a big issue of the fact that the majority of the streaming service’s users listen to her tracks for nothing rather than signing up to the subscription service,” Bragg wrote in a long Facebook post.

“These worthy sentiments have been somewhat undermined by Swift making her new album and back catalogue available on Google’s new Music Key streaming service which also offers listeners a free service alongside a premium subscription tier.

“She should just be honest with her fans and say, ‘Sorry but [Google co-founder] Sergey Brin gave me a huge amount of money to be the headline name […] and so I’ve sold my soul to Google’.”

Billy Bragg is suspicious about Taylor Swift's decision to quit Spotify

Swift, however, gave her own reasons for quitting Spotify. “I’m not willing to contribute my life’s work to an experiment that I don’t feel fairly compensates the writers, producers, artists and creators of this music,” she told Yahoo.

“I didn’t like the perception that it was putting forth and so I decided to change the way I was doing things.”

Now, Swift’s spokesperson has stepped in to back her up, saying in a statement that there has been “absolutely no discussion or agreement of any kind with Google’s new music streaming service”.

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Daniel Ek, Spotify CEO, recently said that Swift is forgoing a possible £3.7 million with her decision to leave the service.

Swift sold an impressive 1.29 million copies of her new album 1989 in its first week of sale, making it the fastest-selling album in 12 years.

She has been confirmed to headline the Victoria’s Secret show in London this December, as well as British Summer Time Hyde Park next June.