All Articles Tagged "birdman"
One song can make or break an artist’s career. The right song can put them on the map, but the wrong song can send them to court, which was the case with these artists sued over their songs.
The Notorious B.I.G.
Even though he’s been dead for almost two decades, The Notorious B.I.G. still isn’t exempt from being sued over his music. Lee Hutson, former lead singer of The Impressions, is suing Biggie’s estate over the alleged illegal use of one of his songs. Hutson accuses the Brooklyn rapper of using a sample of “Can’t Say Enough About Mom” in his 1994 song “The What” featuring Method Man and he only noticed it two years ago. Bad Boy Records filed a pre-emptive claim a few days before Hutson saying any claim about a sample is past the statute of limitations. Negotiation between the two sides broke down and it looks like the suit will be headed to court.
Forbes‘ Top 5 Wealthiest Hip-Hop Artists list has remained unchanged for three years — until now! Jay Z can no longer claim his throne as the second-richest rap mogul in America. And while Diddy (unsurprisingly) tops the list again, he’s about $120 million richer this time around!
Diddy can now boast to being worth a whopping $700 million — a sweet upgrade from last year’s $580 million, thanks to a majority equity stake in Revolt TV, a new channel focused on up-and-coming music aficionados.
“Right now my focus is Revolt and making it the number one, most-trusted, most credible worldwide brand for music,” he recently told Forbes in an interview. “And to get Revolt to be the quintessential definition of real time. I think that’s the future.”
Diddy is closer to becoming a billionaire than ever! At $700 million, Ciroc Obama — as he once dubbed himself — damn near can’t be surpassed.
Jay Z and Dr. Dre, however, have been neck-and-neck for years with Hov having the slight advantage. But this time, the Beats headphone tycoon penned a deal with Carlyle for a cool $500 million — “Beats’ value is soaring toward $2 billion,” Forbes adds. Dr. Dre pushed Jay Z out the way and secured second place with a net worth of $550 million; he was at $350 million just last year!
Jay Z falls down to third place with a net worth of $520 million, a step up from 2013’s $475 million. Much of Jay Z’s recent growth comes from Roc Nation, the sports management agency that the Holy Grail rapper added to his record label.
Birdman, founder of Cash Money, has seen a slight jump in his net worth — $150 million to $160 million in one year. The record label includes hip hop’s most lucrative artists such as Drake, Nicki Minaj, and Lil Wayne. “Diversification is on the way with Cash Money Content, a YMCMB clothing line and GT Vodka,” Forbes adds.
Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson saw his net worth increase by $15 million. Currently worth $140 million, the laid-back rapper owes his fortunes to his VitaminWater venture.
The Forbes‘ Top 5 list hasn’t seen new rappers on the list since 2010 — Jay Z and Diddy was No.1 and No.2 respectively, but Akon and Lil Wayne followed with Dr. Dre in fifth place.
And if you want to learn more about how Hov made it to the top of this list, check out the latest Moguldom Studios documentary.
Bet no one’s batting an eye when this year’s Billboard Power 100 announced Jay Z and Beyonce as No. 1. Between Jay Z’s Magna Carta Holy Grail and Beyonce’s self-titled visual album — which came upon us like a thief in the night — it’s no surprise that the Carters were selected as the top dogs of the music industry.
Billboard further solidifies Jay Z and Beyonce’s throne as “King Jay and Queen Bey” by crowning them the most powerful moguls in entertainment. Last year, these two weren’t even on the list! The reason, according to Billboard, for their sudden placement on the mighty lineup are their unparalleled methods of connecting to their audience.
“They instantly changed how the industry and fans thought about interacting with music,” Billboard notes. In a symbiotic relationship, Samsung agreed to purchase 1 million copies of Magna Carta Holy Grail – and offered the album for free to Galaxy S4 consumers – to rival Apple’s dominion over the market; Jay Z nabbed a $5 million deal and went platinum.
“You’ve got to have cutting-edge ideas with cutting-edge companies who are ready, willing and able to reach a mass audience. It’s great Jay Z is forcing all of us to think this way,” said Scott Borchetta, Big Machine Label Group’s CEO.
In response to going platinum, Jay Z famously tweeted “#newrules.”
Beyonce, following her husband’s philosophy, flipped the music industry upside down with an album that caught everyone off guard. Without a promo, the Drunk in Love songstress dropped 14 new songs and 17 videos on December 13. Engulfed by the hype, almost everyone and their mamas bought Beyonce’s $16 visual album; it sold 80,000 copies on iTunes in three hours!
Britney Spears’ Britney Jean album barely sold 64,000 copies in 10 days.
“The release of Beyoncé’s album was a great way to finish the year, and a chief reminder for me that artists, songwriters and producers have really good ideas,” said Jon Platt, Warner/Chappell Music’s creative president.
Other notable people of color who’ve made the list are Frank Cooper (the CMO of global consumer engagement at PepsiCo is No. 15), Bryan ‘Birdman’ Williams and Ronald ‘Slim’ Williams (No. 50), the aforementioned Jon Platt (No. 51), and L.A. Reid (No. 56). Many of the people who made the list are executives on the business side of the music industry rather than performers.
Well, The Game is making another move to push his music career to the next level: He signed to Cash Money/Young Money Records.
On Saturday evening, Baby/Birdman/Whatever you want to call him, tweeted the news making it official and welcoming The Game to the YMCB family. The Game followed with his own tweet saying it was time to “close the doors” on others.
According to Miss Info’s site, there has been a lot of speculation as to whether or not he’d sign to the label. His last album, Jesus Piece, was his fifth and final release on Interscope Records.
Young Money/Cash Money has been seemingly snatching up artists left and right, but besides albums from their stars – Drake, Nicki Minaj, Lil Wayne, and the slightly lesser know Tyga – none of them have actually released anything. Bow Wow has been signed to Cash Money since 2009 and the one album that was scheduled to be released, Underrated, hasn’t been talked about since 2011. Busta Rhymes and Mystikal have been signed to the label for two years with no album releases while Christina Milian joined the YM family in 2012 with… nothing.
So we’ll see if The Game will actually ever have an album come out on Young Money/Cash Money. There’s a chance something will come out on the label seeing as though of all the recent signees, he’s the most musically successful one in recent years.
Time will tell but good luck to Jayceon (The Game’s real name)!
“I’m not slowing or softening,” yelled the can’t-be-tamed Eminem. “No apologies!”
Seen as crass to some and satirical to others, his murder-laden, homophobic slur-ridden, misogyny-filled lyrics provoked critics. But Eminem kept his promise and never apologized for it — and his fan base still remained loyal. Despite his kid-unfriendly music, many have considered the “Hip-Hop Cash King” to be one of the greatest rappers alive.
As years have passed, J.Cole, Lil Wayne, and Rick Ross have emerge as hip-hop royalty. And they’ve also been on the receiving end of criticism for their lyrics. Unlike Slim Shady, however, all three have apologized. But how genuine are these apologies?
Rick Ross’ failure to show remorse for a “U.O.E.N.O” verse about slipping a molly on an unsuspecting woman ripped his Reebok endorsement deal right out of his hands. “At this time, it is in everyone’s best interest for Reebok to end its partnership with Mr. Ross,” Reebok told Billboard.
This sent Rick Ross flying to Twitter to apologize: “I don’t condone rape. Apologies for the #lyric interpreted as rape.”
Lil Wayne plunged into hot water for using the name of Emmett Till, who was brutally murdered in 1955 for allegedly whistling at a White woman, in the lyrics of one of his songs. He apologized (kind of), but Mountain Dew was not on board. They pulled a Reebok and dropped Wayne.
I could just imagine their PR reps badgering them to issue a statement of apology: “Wayne, you best put those tattooed tears to use and show em’ that you’re sorry!” “Ross you have $5 million at stake!” But I think I’ll pass on a phony apology that was sloppily thrown together to dodge the possibility of losing a lucrative deal. I’d rather accept no apology over a faux-pology. Especially since Birdman, who works closely with Lil Wayne as CEO of Cash Money, recently stated that he considered boycotting Reebok and Mountain Dew. “This is music, man; all we doin’ is makin’ music,” Birdman said. “Next time, we’re gonna stand up [against Reebok and Mountain Dew] and we’re gonna shut that s*** down.”
I understand that as a rap artist, you can’t possibly satisfy every single listener. Should they apologize for every offended person? Insisting that rappers keep it PC will just have them walking on egg shells; freedom of expression would be smothered. “I view rap similar to how I view comedy,” J.Cole said. “It’s going to ruffle feathers at times.” Still, disgracing Black history, for example, is an absolute no-no. Glorifying materialism, dropping n-bombs and drug-use, although controversial, does not seem to jeopardize rappers’ bank accounts because these sensitive topics have no major campaigns behind them.
Autism is associated with outspoken celebrities like Holly Robinson Peete, Jenny McCarthy, Toni Braxton and Kate Winslet. UltraViolet, a women’s rights group that successfully helped convince 140 advertisers to pull out from Rush Limbaugh’s radio station for his comments about activist Sandra Fluke, pressured Reebok to sever ties with Rick Ross. Some individuals and groups can attack where it hurts the most: the pockets.
J.Cole is being applauded for delivering a heart-tugging apology after Peete, mother of an autistic son, made a teary plea on Access Hollywood over lyrics on Drake’s “Jodeci Freestyle” that offensively referenced autism and retardation. In an in-depth letter, J.Cole said, “I’ll gladly own my mistake[…] there’s nothing cool about mean-spirited comments about someone with Autism.”
What adds an element of sincerity to the letter is the fact that J. Cole didn’t make it after an endorsement deal was threatened. He stepped up and owned up to a faux pas that could have been left unacknowledged. By responding, he added a positive notch to his reputation. Sometimes doing the right thing and admitting a mistake is the right thing to do simply because it’s the right thing to do.
On the other hand, if a multi-million dollar endorsement deal is at stake, in most cases, an apology is tied to it. As a representative of a brand, hip-hop artists compromised their “artistic freedom” the minute they signed it away to Reebok and Mountain Dew.
A new Forbes list puts Diddy on top of a list of the wealthiest artists in hip-hop with an estimated wealth of $580 million. Most of his money comes from his Ciroc deal rather than music and, Forbes says, the vodka is riding a wave of popularity that would significantly add to Diddy’s wealth if Diageo ever sold the brand.
Coming in second is Jay-Z with $475 million and Dr. Dre is in third with $350 million. Perhaps the biggest surprise (to me, at least) is Birdman at number four, but it totally makes sense. His $150 million fortune comes from Cash Money/Young Money, which has artists like Nicki Minaj and Drake signed to it. And rounding out the five is 50 Cent.
According to Entertainment Weekly, all five of these artists were on this list last year, in this order. But all of them have more money this year, most significantly Dr. Dre who has $90 million more to kick around this year.
Update: Friends say Lil Wayne has been released from the hospital.
Since Lil Wayne’s hospitalization last week, there have been numerous claims made about the New Orleans rapper’s medical condition and the events leading up to his hospitalization. Some reports have even implied that the entertainer was on life support and family members were contemplating whether or not to pull the plug. Yesterday, Wayne’s mentor Birdman called up Angie Martinez of Hot 97 to tell how things went down and refute the conflicting reports that may be circulating.
On Wayne’s current state:
“He’s great. He’s doing much, much better. He’s good.”
“[He'll probably be going home] today or tomorrow, real soon though. He’s recovered real good.”
On the events leading up to Wayne’s seizure:
“He had a seizure Tuesday night. He’s really been in the hospital since Tuesday. You know, all of the stuff that people is saying, there’s no truth to it at all. He had a seizure. We brought him to the hospital. We’ve been here ever since. He’s doing much better and he’s straight.”
“We were on our way to shoot a video when it happened. This is like the second or third time it happened, so automatically we laid him down and called the ambulance to get him to the hospital… I was there with him.”
On speculation that drugs caused the seizure:
“Honestly, you know it’s just his work ethic. What he puts in, what he believes in and how hard he works, how much dedication he gives to music, his fans and what he’s trying to accomplish in life. It ain’t had nothing to do with drugs, no such thing like that. He works around the clock. It wasn’t nothing about no drugs. He just needed to get some rest and relax. Take it one day at a time. He’ll be back, normal as anybody else. He just needs to relax.”
“At this point that [syrup] is not what they’re saying the cause is. It’s more of not getting proper rest.
On TMZ’s report:
“None of that was true. We were actually watching the game when all that popped off. It wasn’t never no truth to that He was never in that kind of situation [life support, medical induced coma etc.] throughout the whole few days we’ve been in the hospital. He ain’t never been bout to die.”
“They [TMZ] freaked the world out with that.”
“We got family and kids. When you putting out false rumors like that, you know, you can really damage families like that and have them fear.”
Turn the page to hear Baby’s full interview.
Reginae Carter and Bria Williams are following in their fathers footsteps — kind of. The two 14 year-old girls, who are the daughters of business partners and friends Lil Wayne and Birdman, respectively, are entering the public eye with a new book. The young pair teamed up for Paparazzi Princesses, which tells the story of two young girls dealing with unintentional fame as they grow up as the kids of famous parents, reports Rolling Stone (via Yahoo). The book will probably appeal to high schoolers, who are struggling with everything from schoolwork to crushes on boys.
The dads are happy about the new books. “There’s no better feeling than watching Bria and Reginae make this dream come true,” said Birdman in a statement reported by AllHipHop.com. “They took an idea, worked extremely hard, and brought it to life. It’s the kind of story that everybody can feel, and it’s only the start of much bigger things for these two wonderful young ladies.”
Lil Wayne says he is anxious for others to read the book. He said to the site, “Proud doesn’t even begin to describe how me and the Birdman feel. I can’t wait for everybody else to experience their story.”
Karyn Langhorne Folan co-authored the book, which will be out June 4th.
If the book is a success, most likely it won’t just be teens making it popular. According to a recent study, 55 percent of buyers of works that publishers designate for kids aged 12 to 17 — known as YA books — are 18 or older, with the largest segment aged 30 to 44, a group that alone accounted for 28 percent of YA sales, reports Publishers Weekly. The adults who buy YA books aren’t buying them for others — when asked about the intended recipient, they report that 78 percent of the time they are purchasing books for their own reading found the study Understanding the Children’s Book Consumer in the Digital Age conducted by Bowker Market Research.
Will you pick up a copy?
At this point, Lil Wayne’s antics are starting to scare me. It seems like his extracurricular activities are starting to negatively affect his art and his business. In other words, at least once or twice a week, he’s starting to act more and more like a buffoon. His latest shenanigan took place during All Star weekend at an “LIV on Sunday” at Stereo Live in Houston, Texas. The Young Money Crew and several other celebrities were there celebrating Birdman’s birthday.
Anyway, Wayne claims that the Miami Heat had him banned from attending the All Star game. (Have you noticed the NBA really doesn’t mess with him like that anymore?) Naturally, being the sports fan that he is, Wayne was not happy about this decree and when he took the stage to perform, he made sure to let the audience know about it, in probably the most classless way possible. This is what sources are saying Wayne said that night.
“If you’re wondering why you didn’t see me at the All Star Game,” Weezy began his rant, “It’s because I was banned from attending all NBA events. The Miami Heat got me banned.” You may remember last week when Lil Wayne was escorted out of a Heat game for cheering for the Lakers. Allegedly being kicked out of the game was just the beginning and now Lil Wayne is officially blacklisted from the NBA. Ouch! That’s not the worst part though. Before leading the crowd in a “F*** NBA!” chant, Lil Wayne decided to say one last thing, “F*** NBA! F*** Lebron! F*** SheWade! F*** Chris Bosh! And I f***ed Chris Bosh wife!”
In addition to questioning Dwyane Wade’s sexuality, calling him “SheWade,” and allegedly claiming he slept with Chris Bosh’s wife, Wayne instructed the crowd to participate in a little call and response.
“When I say fawk, ya’ll say NBA.”
The groupies, male and female alike, were all too happy to participate.
Ok. But you all spent hundreds, if not thousands of dollars, to attend one of the NBA’s biggest events of the year. You can yell fawk the NBA as much as you want, but you think they care about any of that while they’re counting your hard earned money? Probz not.
I’m sure Wayne was probably drunk at minimum; but seriously, is that a valid excuse for a man his age? Not at all. I’d love for him to do better.
In case you find this story hard to believe, check out the video below.
Reginae Carter has blossomed into a beautiful young lady right before our eyes. Although she’s the daughter of rapper Lil Wayne and reality star Toya Wright, she doesn’t appear to be looking to get by on the star power of her parents. At just 14 years old, she’s proven that she intends to blaze her own trail. Reginae and Birdman’s daughter Bria Williams have decided to put their creative minds together and pen a teen book. The upcoming book is entitled Paparazzi Princesses.The fictional novel will be published by Simon & Schuster in conjunction with Cash Money Content. The book’s description, which appears on the Simon & Schuster website reads:
“In the tradition of Drama High, The Clique, and the Gossip Girl series, welcome to the world of the Paparazzi Princesses. Money and designer clothes. Fame and red carpets. VIP concert tickets. Expensive parties. That’s the good stuff…but being the daughter of a music mogul or a famous rapper isn’t easy.
Step inside the lives of Kayla Jones and Promise Walker. As the daughters of two legends of rap music, trips, cash, designer labels, and famous friends are just business as usual. But so are the high expectations of super-successful parents, the drama of having two-faced friends, the not-always welcome glare of constant media attention, and the hurt of narsty gossip. Kayla and Promise face a daily struggle to figure out who to trust. To make matters worse, sometimes they’re not even sure of each other!”
Reginae took to her Twitter account over the weekend to express her excitement surrounding the upcoming book.
“Just wrapped the cover shoot for me and @briawilliams1 book ! Stay tuned my wonderful reginaetors ?#YMCMP”
Paparazzi Princesses is set to release June of 2013. I think this idea is absolutely adorable. I’m sure the parents of both girls are really proud of them. It’s beautiful to see how much Toya, Wayne and Baby invest in the creativity of their children.
Jazmine Denise is a news writer for Madame Noire. Follow her on Twitter @jazminedenise