TAYLOR SWIFT SIGNS DEAL WITH UNIVERSAL MUSIC PUBLISHING GROUP: Taylor Swift is moving from Sony/ATV Music Publishing to Universal Music Publishing Group. Universal Music Publishing Group announced that Swift signed an exclusive global publishing deal, which puts all of the singer’s future creative output under the Universal banner. Swift was with Sony/ATV for the majority of her career, and is believed to have completed her contract with the company in late 2019. The new UMPG deal reunites her with former Sony/ATV Nashville head Troy Tomlinson, who became chairman and CEO of UMPG Nashville in July. Swift signed with Universal Music Group in 2018 after leaving her record label, Big Machine Records. UMG’s Republic Records is now her U.S. record label.
BRUNO MARS SET TO STAR IN & PRODUCE MUSIC-DRIVEN DISNEY MOVIE: Bruno Mars has teamed with Disney for the movie deal. While the plot is a secret, Deadline reports the film will include mostly original music that Bruno will both write and perform. The publication notes that the Disney deal has come about after “months of discussion” between Bruno and Walt Disney production president Sean Bailey, who also made the deal for Disney to release the movie version of Hamilton. Bruno celebrated the deal by tweeting a video of himself playing the piano, and the caption, “If your heart is in your dream No request is too extreme When you wish upon a Star.”
JUDGE RULES KESHA DEFAMED DR. LUKE BY CLAIMING HE RAPED KATY PERRY: New York State Supreme Court Judge Jennifer G. Schecter has made a significant ruling in the long-running legal battle between Kesha and producer Lukasz “Dr. Luke” Gottwald. The judge ruled that Kesha “made a false statement to Lady Gaga about Gottwald and that was defamatory.” The “defamatory” remarks refer to text messages that Kesha sent to Lady Gaga, in which Kesha claimed that Gottwald raped Katy Perry. Schecter noted that Perry denied the claim, adding that there’s no supporting evidence to back up Kesha’s message to Gaga. “Publication of a false statement to even one person, here Lady Gaga, is sufficient to impose liability,” the judge wrote. The judge also ordered Kesha to pay Dr. Luke over $373,000 in interest because she was late in her payment of $1.3 million in royalties to the producer.