Singer Halsey is calling out her record label for allegedly blocking the release of a new song unless a viral TikTok marketing campaign is staged.
In a TikTok posted to her account on Sunday, the “I Am Not a Woman, I’m a God” singer (who uses both the pronouns “she/her” and “they/them”) expressed her frustration at the regard to the Astralwerks/Capitol label.
“Basically I have a song that I love and want to get out ASAP but my record company won’t let me,” read the text covering Halsey’s face, while a snippet of the unreleased song is played in the background. “I’ve been in this industry for eight years and I’ve sold over 165 million records and my record label says I can’t release [the song] unless they can fake a viral moment on TikTok.
The singer-songwriter has previously spoken out against her record label, which she joined in 2014, as well as the music industry and the media in general. Following the August release of her fourth studio album, “If I Can’t Have Love, I Want Power,” she said Double Daily Hits about the “dehumanizing” experience of recording during pregnancy. (She gave birth to her first child shortly before the album was released.)
“I found throughout my pregnancy that there was a whirlwind of give and take when it came to my bodily autonomy,” she said in the interview. “…Updating my progression to accommodate executives and investors, ensuring my child’s arrival was timely enough that it didn’t cost anyone money, was dehumanizing.”
In Sunday’s TikTok, Halsey went on to say, “It’s all about marketing, and they’re doing it to every artist these days.”
“I just wanna release music man and I deserve better,” the video concludes. “I’m tired.”
An hour later, Halsey posted a TikTok tracking in which she appears to be conversing with a male colleague off-camera. The clip of her face, covered with the text “I wish I was joking lol” shows Halsey listening to the unnamed person saying, “…the title of the song, because it would be ‘Halsey is so good’ and they would get the ‘art on TikTok. If you’re ok with these things but don’t announce the date,” they say, the song can be released “between Monday and Wednesday.”
After a pause, Halsey and the person agree that they “hate it” and “it sucks”.
A representative for Astralwerks did not immediately respond to TheWrap’s request for comment.