Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Birdman discusses possible NFL ownership, Young Jeezy, and T.I.

By The Hip Hop Writer
Hip Hop Vibe Staff Writer

As one of the original hip hop entrepreneurs, Birdman built Cash Money Records into a business machine long before Lil Wayne was ever even signed to the label. But, after adding Wayne, along with Juvenile and B.G., Cash Money Records hit the big time. In 1997, Universal Records learned of the movement coming from New Orleans and they soon invited Birdman and his brother, Slim, to their New York offices.

The result of this meeting ended up being a distribution deal, which still remains in tact. Despite having a major distribution deal, Cash Money still retains full creative control and over 60% of all profits generated from their music. With this type of flexibility, Birdman and Slim have been able to do a lot. Some of their actions have been good, while others beg to differ.

Juvenile was the flagship artist of Cash Money Records for some years, but he abruptly left the label when he discovered he had been cheated out of royalties. In a similar fashion, B.G. also left the label. After both rappers had left Cash Money, they took their issues public, which led to a major feud. In 2002, there were rumors of Lil Wayne also leaving the label, but he decided to stay and become the new focal point.

At the time, the move hurt Cash Money in a terrible way, but soon Lil Wayne unleashed the fury onto the world that has made him into a legend in his own right. While Wayne goes off making hits, Birdman watches as his bank account has more money to store. Because of this new profit, Birdman has been thinking bigger than rap.

Earlier this year, he discussed the possibility of owning an oil company. However, after the media interfered with these plans, Birdman said no more about the oil. Recently, he has been thinking about expanding the original Cash Money label into a distribution company, putting out the music of others. But, recently, the rising mogul has been more interested in owning an NFL franchise.

The newest owner of the Miami Dolphins, Stephen Ross, has been selling small stakes of the team to many hip hop and R&B entertainers. Birdman hopes to become the latest hip hop entertainer to become a part-owner of the Dolphins. Outside of football, Birdman also spoke of how he missed out on some major talent that wanted to be on Cash Money Records.

Before becoming the heads of their own labels, both Young Jeezy and T.I. were hoping to be signed by Cash Money Records. While Birdman was interested in signing both artists, he was only focused on seriously putting out music from his own artists. Because they wanted to put out music, they ended up starting their own labels and have made nice careers for them. Birdman also stated Keyshia Cole was interested in being on the label.


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