The call for record labels to be held accountable for how they navigate artists’ careers is ongoing, and Jadakiss is speaking on how those executives move. There have been conversations about rappers being money-makers for labels after they’ve died. We’ve seen how bigwigs have capitalized on the deaths of our favorite artists. Contracts and deals have also been disparaged by entertainers stuck in loops of debt. Jadakiss recently visited the I Am Athlete podcast to share thoughts on labels taking a gamble on artists’ lives.
“[There was] a song about it, and it was able to get a lot of streams, and that became a thing with the whole Drill [scene],” the Rap icon said. “They actually going out, gettin’ active and doin’ stuff and then go into the studio and make a song about what they just did.” Drill music has been under a microscope from the public to politicians. Mayor Eric Adams even called for a ban on Drill as he lamented over the ongoing violence in New York City.
Labels Are Taking A Gamble
“That sh*t get nipped in the bud as soon as it got created,” Jadakiss added. “But nobody’s going to these labels saying they wrong for this. We just blaming it on the kids. So, like my brother [Styles P] said, he don’t like to just put all the blame on these young artists because the radio stations are making them the top songs of the playlist. And the labels are still signing them.”
“They even got it—they puttin’ out life insurance on these young kids now.” Others were surprised at the revelation, but it’s been common for some time. “The labels. ‘Cause they gamblin’ on you to do something dumb, so they can profit after you die. So, this is getting ridiculous.” Rappers have complained about how labels move after one of their artists dies. Posthumous albums are quickly put together, and special edition merchandise is sold.
Vince Staples Said Similar Last Year
It was around this time last year when Vince Staples shared similar thoughts during an interview with Hot 97. “It’s money in it and they gonna keep selling it and we gonna keep perpetuating it and we gon’ be hurt when somebody dies,” said the Long Beach star. “I don’t necessarily know if they care. If they did, man the album ready in four weeks once you die. You get more press on the album after you die.
“When it comes to these systems, they look at you like, ‘Oh, you’re dead, now we got something to move with.’ To the people that’s running music: just treat these people with humanity. You’re worth something before you die.”