News: UPDATE: Jay-Z Confirms Def Jam Buyout, "Not Every Artist Can Say They Own All Their Music"

Thursday, May 21, 2009 3:30PM

Written by Cyrus Langhorne

Hip-hop mogul Jay-Z has confirmed reports which claimed he has purchased the remainder of his business contract with Def Jam Records, including his unreleased Blueprint 3 album obligation.

Jigga kept details to a minimum, however, he did say a conversation with Def Jam executives has already taken place.

"I can honestly say, working with Doug Morris and LA Reid has been a unique and fulfilling experience and I respect them immensely," Jay said in an interview. "I've been in the family for almost my entire career. Doug and I spoke directly and had one of the most unique 'negotiations' ever. Doug won the toss but, we both won in the end...I thank him for allowing me to be a completely independent artist. Not every artist can say they own or are given the opportunity to own all of their music." (Rap Radar)

While Def Jam has yet to comment on the alleged transaction, details surrounding the deal have begun circulating online.

As Roc Nation, Jay-Z's new home under the Live Nation umbrella, takes shape, the hip-hop superstar has reportedly bought back the last remaining record on his Island Def Jam deal for what some say is a whopping $5 million, raising a number of intriguing questions. How does the album figure into the plans of Roc Nation's brain trust, which also includes the A&R-savvy Jay Brown and Tata, as well as Jay-Z's business manager John Menielly? How will it be marketed and distributed? Will Roc Nation employ a traditional distribution channel or take the LP direct to retail? (Hits Daily Double)

Jay previously discussed his long-awaited Blueprint 3 release earlier this year.

"For me, the process of making an album is difficult with so many things going on," he said in an interview. "And me, I wanna make it beyond and above. I'm gonna take my time with it. I don't have any quotas, and that's a good thing. It may be too freeing. It's a good thing and a bad thing. You know, I think I need some restrictions. 'Cause if I had restrictions, I would have done it in three weeks. I would have made what I believe to be a great piece of art. I actually recorded a lot of records already. You know, all those records that leaked [online] were on The Blueprint 3." (MTV)

Claiming he helped craft Blueprint 3, producer No. I.D. recently promised the finished product would be a "classic."

"Me and Kanye [West] have been doing a lot of work, we worked on Blueprint together," No. I.D. revealed. "Most of the stuff, I kinda took an ego, stepped back and said, 'Hey, let's [Dr.] Dre and Mel-Man it. I played Mel-Man. I'm gonna say, we were doing Blueprint 3 when we did 'Heartless.' 'Heartless' made 808s & Heartbreak happen and all that is related but everything in Blueprint 3 is like 808s & Heartbreak but with more hip-hop. So it's kinda like they related and Jay brings it around to make it hip-hop credible. It's some records on there. That record is also gonna be something that's gonna grow on people in a certain way and in a certain amount of time it's gonna be a full fledged classic." (Real Talk Express)

Jay has been with Def Jam for over a decade.

Together with friends Damon Dash and Kareem "Biggs" Burke, Jay-Z created Roc-a-Fella Records, a risky strategy for cutting out the middleman and making money for himself. Once he found a reputable distributor, Priority Records (and then later Def Jam), Jay-Z finally had everything in place, including a debut album, Reasonable Doubt (1996). (All Music)

A release date for Blueprint 3 has not yet been announced.

[For more on your favorite rappers from the Big Apple peep SOHH NYC]

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