In the past few years, Taylor Swift has unfortunately been no stranger to legal stresses and court battles. She recently came to a solution over the lack of ownership of her first six albums by deciding to re-record them all when the masters to her work were sold by Scooter Braun for $300 million. Prior to that, Swift won a civil case against an ex-DJ in regards to a sexual assault incident. And now, her legal team is countering a lawsuit made by Utah’s Evermore Park.
Taylor Swift recently blew fans away with the release of her ninth studio album, evermore, which she wrote in quarantine directly after writing a prior surprise album, folklore. Following the December release of evermore, a theme park in Pleasant Grove, Utah filed a lawsuit against Swift for the use of their “evermore” trademark. It’s been about three weeks since the park issued the lawsuit, and an interesting development has heated things up.
Taylor Swift’s management team has decided to file a counterclaim against Evermore Park pertaining to the business willfully using her music without the proper licensing to do so. According to THR, Evermore Park has been playing and performing her music with BMI’s knowledge for over a year, and it has ignored warnings of infringement. BMI is a performing rights organization that protects and collects revenue for works such as Taylor’s music.
Apparently, Swift’s team found that BMI has sent a number of letters to Evermore Park with draft music license agreements regarding the songs it has been using. Evermore Park is not only reportedly using Taylor Swift’s songs, either – the theme park also plays Katy Perry, Abba, The Beatles, Billy Joel, Britney Spears, Journey, Queen, Weezer, Whitney Houston, and so forth without permissions and has continued to do so despite claims.
Swift’s attorneys are now asking the court to order that the park pay damages and be permanently enjoined from playing her music. Her legal team is demanding a jury trial and is calling Evermore Park’s initial lawsuit simply "a meritless trademark claim." We’ll have to see how the case shakes out, but Swift’s team is certainly continuing to fight hard for her to have as much ownership over her work as she can.
In regards to her prior case, Swift could not win the ownership over her original masters of her albums Taylor Swift, Fearless, Speak Now, Red, 1989 and reputation. Since she decided to re-record new versions of all of them, she's started with 2008’s Fearless. Earlier this month, she released an updated version of “Love Story,” and she may be hinting at a spring re-release of the entire album.
Just before Taylor Swift released evermore, the artist put out a Disney+ movie about folklore about the process behind writing her Grammy nominated album and live performances. Swift most certainly has more in store in the near future amidst this developing lawsuit.