Rick Ross has the hip-hop community buzzing again. This time it’s because of his thoughts and feelings on the bad business practices on Bryan “Baby” Williams aka Birdman. To be clear, none of this is “new news”. However, we can all say this is the first time any artist has been vocal, thorough and made it clear in song. The reason why Cash Money had a talent roster of two is rooted in what many call “Bad Birdman Business”.
From Bangledesh to Tyga, you can find numerous artist and producers who claim to have never gotten a check that has cleared, paid to the order of that artist or producer from Cash Money Records. You can also find a number of artist and producers who have admitted they’ve had to sue Mr. Williams in order to get the original money owed for work done. For the life of me I never understood that. I’ve been lost on this topic since 2005. How can a man who allegedly doesn’t pay anybody convince new artist and producers to do business?
Is it fear? Birdman switched from the Blue to the Red team and it appears that he really will get his hands dirty. I know that’s the sub-storyline on the “industreets”. However, I don’t think that’s the case cause I would think people would be afraid to sue if they felt that real street heat.
Is it manipulation? Does Birdman get these artist and producers too high or drunk to actually conduct business and he suckers them in?
Is he a master motivator? Does Birdman sell the dream so well that work gets done before an invoice gets processed? Does he bring up the classic records and resume of Cash Money Records and how “You can be on that resume too” but never mentions money to be paid out?
Does it start as a barter? Wayne was the best thang smoking for a while [With all respect to Young Dro]. Could this all start out with “Would you like to work with Lil Wayne? You know he’s the best rapper alive” and that was deemed as payment enough?
Is it about fame? If it is. It must be understood that the price of fame is cheap. You don’t need to cash out or in on fame to have it.
I want to feel sorry for a lot of the artist and producers who allegedly become victims, but I can’t for two reasons. One being Juvenile and the other being Mannie Fresh. Juvenile has the first classic everything for Cash Money. One thing you can’t deny is the Cash Money Boat doesn’t sail smoothly if 400 Degreez never comes out or sounds differently. How can you not pay the man who legitimizes your label with 1 album? An album that spawned 2 of the biggest records of that year? That’s reason enough to never want to do business with Cash Money.
Mannie Fresh produced every single track on every single Cash Money album when they started. How is Mannie Fresh not being taken care of? He literally crafted the sound for an entire label. That means he’s at least 50% of every single song and interlude that comes out. When a person doing that much work is disgruntled about pay, you can’t look in that same direction and expect to be treated better. It would make no sense to think that.
How can there be “Respeck” for a multi-millionaire who is not compensating the team he hires? Let’s keep this in mind. These people aren’t saying they are underpaid. They are saying they aren’t getting paid at all. That’s a problem. However, on the same hand, it’s not a problem. Cash Money finds a new artist to sign every year. The latest being Robb Banks. I don’t understand that at all. So no matter what happens. I can’t feel sorry for him.
Until Cash Money Records goes bankrupt and can’t find an artist to sign, it’s going to be difficult for anyone to cop pleas and vent their frustrations about “Bad Birdman Business”. We have 20 years worth of stories and information on unsettled debits including with the labels biggest star ever, Lil Wayne. All that and yet another rising star just signed a new deal. Let’s stop the post right there.
Here’s the full song in case you haven’t heard it already.
Be Safe. Be Humble. Live Hip-Hop.