Maybach Music Group’s Wale may have Rick Ross as a boss, but the Washington, D.C.-bred emcee speaks on the brilliance of rap mogul Jay-Z‘s business acumen in the new issue of Billboard magazine.
Within his cover feature, which he shares with Ricky Rozay, Wale opens up about his close-knit relationship with Hov.
Wale has good advice coming from all directions. “Jay-Z, essentially, is my business adviser,” Wale says. “Him, [Roc Nation VP of management] Rich [Kleiman] and [Roc Nation’s] John Meneilly. I know Jay has a personal place in his heart for Ambition. I remember one time I was on the phone with Jay, asking him, ‘What did I do [wrong]? What can I do differently?’ He was like, ‘Maybe you just didn’t come with that single. You made a solid first album. But you didn’t come up with that single.’ That just added fuel to my fire.” (Billboard)
In early 2010, Wale admitted almost signing to Def Jam off the strength of Jay.
“Jay’s my man, like, I met Jay-Z three years ago when he was at Def Jam,” Wale explained referring to Hov’s 2005-2008 run as Def Jam president. “I almost had a situation there but he left. He kept me under the wing and I get to go a lot of places that I probably couldn’t afford and eat things I can’t pronounce and stuff like that. But touring with Jay, like being the opening act in arenas and it’s only 20 percent full, we may or may not have a dressing room, it’s good. It’s like bieng a freshman on a footballteam. And I pay my dues, and I think a lot of times artists feel like you’re supposed to give it to them.” (“The Mo’ Nique Show”)
Last spring, Ricky Rozay compared Wale’s creativity to Grammy-winning rapper Kanye West.
“After spending months of my summer working with Kanye, I learned and seen so many different visions and ideas come to light. I was there for ‘Flashing Lights’, when it was actually titled another title that me and Kanye went back and forth about. And when I think about Wale, I think about Kanye. And the kind of rhymes Wale has been laying down the last few months, since we been in the studio, I’m pretty sure there’s gonna be a lot of similarities as far as the pictures that he paints,” the Bawse continued. “Of course, Kanye is one of the greats of our time, but I see that same potential in Wale.” (MTV)
After three weeks, Wale’s new Ambition solo album has sold over 230,000 copies.
Maybach Music Group rapper Wale’s Ambition fell three slots to No. 18 with 29,300. After three weeks, the Washington, D.C.-based rapper’s sophomore album has pushed out 234,400 units. (SOHH Sales Wrap)
Check out a recent Wale interview below: