Rap Game/ Pyramid Scheme

“Labels put rappers in front of their company to attract other rappers. Look at every label my nigga. Warner Bros. got their artists that they signed urban shit through. Atlantic got their artists they sign urban shit through. Def Jam got their artists they sign urban shit through. And one artist that say, “This is my nigga. I’m gonna let my nigga eat.” Then all the other niggas gotta sign through him. That’s the business model of these major labels. Niggas too stupid. Niggas is too reliant, getting caught up in the ambition of the artist to understand that this shit is disrespectful. If you’re a black man, if you’re a nigga from the struggle, you should be offended by that.”
Nipsey Hussle

Random observation time. This excerpt came a recent interview Nispey Hussle did with Complex magazine in which he describe the structure of the business side of the game. He was talking about ownership and how the labels don’t want artists to have any whatsoever. When he said this in the interview for some reason it just sounded like a pyramid scheme to me. Wikipedia describes a pyramid scheme as an unsustainable business model that involves promising participants payment or services, primarily for enrolling other people into the scheme, rather than supplying any real investment or sale of products or services to the public. It works like this in my opinion. Company finds rapper A; signs him to a sh**ty deal until they become successful.

When they become successful the contract gets renegotiated and the rapper gets some sort of half assed label deal out of it. Rapper A still indebted to the label goes and find Rapper B and signs him to his label. Rapper A doesn’t own his label outright and the company is still eating. Not only on Rapper A but on Rapper B as well. Rapper A does all the work in promoting, getting records done and pushing Rapper B but the primary label still gets the lion share of the profit of Rapper A’s work. If Rapper A has any type of business bones in his body he is going to sign more than one rapper because he realizes the revenue that it would generate. So the company eats off of Rapper A through his label and through his initial contract.

All the while Rapper A is making moves he is still not seeing all of his revenue and is still obligated to putting out albums as well as the stress of breaking new artists. In the mean time Rapper B becomes successful and renegotiates his contract with Rapper A and gets a record label out of the deal like Rapper A did. He is still indebted to Rapper A while he is pushing Rapper C as well as his projects. Rapper C is twice removed from the label yet the label is still eating off of him even though he has no direct dealings with them. The label is eating three time just by bringing one person in. Rapper A thinks he knows the game show he shows it to Rapper B. When the time is right Rapper B puts on Rapper C and the cycle keeps repeating itself.

The label still eats regardless just less with each person that is introduced into the model. The label still stands at the top of the pyramid and everyone else is still subject to their influence. Most people could give a s*t less about business structure and ownership as long as it looks good. To a king however ownership is everything. A king doesn’t build a kingdom just because it looks good to other people that don’t understand business. He builds it to be free and receive all that he is entitled to.

Most people are just happy looking like they are something instead of actually owning anything. I could be absolutely wrong with this one. I am not affiliated with the industry in any way, shape or form but my intuition is right most of the time. Over the years I have learned to respect game no matter how foul it is. To be the best at anything you have to study the structure in order to understand what is at stake. Business is business; somebody always ends up getting f**ked just make sure it isn’t you. Stay Regal.

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