Guest Star: "I Think Cash Money Really Respects My Dad's Work"
Monday, May 16, 2011 5:00PM
[With last week's Cash Money Content re-release of Iceberg Slim's Pimp, the late author's daughter reflects on her family's decision to partner with Baby to put out her father's first autobiographical book.]
I think the influence of my father's books really comes from [courtesy of] the Internet. If it wasn't for the Internet, we would have never really taken hold of his book catalogue. His royalties weren't really good. My father passed away in 1992 and not too much later, around 199, my sister started doing a little bit of research.
It seemed like my father was already out there but the Internet definitely helped spread his works out a lot. I was very pleased and a bit surprised to see there was so much about him out there, especially in different languages. So we started realizing my father had a big thing going on. I was very proud. He was a great writer and a really good dad, something he never writes about. That story was never told.
He loved to write about his youth, but he definitely was a different person than the character most people know him as. He was very entertaining in life and very funny.
As far as us getting with Cash Money Content, there was about a five-year situation that we were going through with [publisher] Holloway House over royalties that weren't being paid out. We had won the settlement and we didn't win a lot of money, because my dad raked in a lot of money after 40 years with that publishing house. But this happens to a lot of artists. It just happens. And it was looking on the Internet and seeing my father having sold 2.5 million copies that sparked us getting someone to look into it.
So it was about five years of fighting with Holloway House in court and my sister found a literary agent and we got the catalogue returned to us in about 2010. part of the settlement was that we would be able to get the catalogue back. The literary agent we found had actually done some stuff for Birdman and they had a business relationship.
With him also being our agent, I think that's how it all happened. So getting with Cash Money Content, they had also put out some other books as well, and then you look at their music and their artists, we thought what a great new start this would be for my father.
At the end of the day, I think Cash Money really respects my dad's work. I think that's what was lacking before and they really wanted to promote the work. Whereas, with Holloway House, it's an older publishing place with the owner being an older man, at least in his 80's.
So I think it was a great business decision and I think Cash Money has a lot more promoting power with everything from their name and with the Internet.
Robert Beck, better known as Iceberg Slim, sold more than six million books before he died in 1992. At one time he was said to be the best-selling African American novelist ever. Before he became a writer Beck was a "manager" of prostitutes, or a pimp, for nearly 30 years. When his first book, Pimp: The Story of My Life, came out in 1967, it held nothing back. Beck became an underground cult figure. He would influence numerous writers, rappers, filmmakers, and criminals over the years.