Former Bad Boy Records artist Shyne has penned an open letter discussing his frustrations with Def Jam Records and displeasure in the company’s treatment of artists.
In his letter, Shyne also calls out Island Def Jam CEO L.A. Reid.
“Def Jam is dying…. Thanks L.A. Reid! Middle fingers to you too!!! Antonio L.A. Reid, quite frankly, doesn’t give a curse word about Hip-Hop!!! He doesn’t get it. He fails to comprehend the holy institution that is Def Jam. How a Jewish guy named Rick & an African [American] guy from Hollis queens by the name of Russell [set] the foundation for a billion dollar industry from an NYU dorm is beyond him….it offends chairman Reid that these hoodlums & criminals call themselves musicians…whatever happened to the days of Shalimar and “Tender Lover”… F**king rappers!!! Mr. Reid doesn’t understand that Nas & Ghostface Killer are modern day prophets…The Roots are Mozart, Shyne is Moses & Kanye is Van Gogh…How else do you make the colossal mistake of not keeping arguably the most influential rapper/rocker (Hovito) around.” (All Hip Hop)
Last week, Nas also penned a letter to Def Jam.
“I won’t even tap dance around in an email, I will get right into it. People connect to the artist @ the end of the day, they don’t connect with the executives. Honestly, nobody even cares what label puts out a great record, they care about who recorded it. Yet time and time again its the executives who always stand in the way of a creative artist’s dream and aspirations. You don’t help draw the truth from my deepest and most inner soul, you don’t even do a great job @ selling it. The #1 problem with DEF JAM is pretty simple and obvious, the executives think they are the stars. You aren’t…. not even close. As a matter of fact, you wish you were, but it didn’t work out so you took a desk job. To the consumer, I COME FIRST. Stop trying to deprive them! I have a fan base that dies for my music and a RAP label that doesn’t understand RAP. Pretty f*cked up situation.” (Karen Civil)
Earlier this week, Shyne told SOHH about his issues with the renowned label.
“I’m definitely trying to get with Cash Money but the Def Jam thing is a question mark right now,” Shyne told SOHH. “I’ve been fixing to get up out of there for a while now because [Island Def Jam CEO] L.A. Reid don’t care about hip-hop. The people up there, they don’t know what they’re doing. When you don’t have a strong leader, where you gonna go? … They don’t care about hip-hop music. You give them a hip-hop record with an R&B singer, you “might” have a chance. They don’t care. You got The Roots, Ghostface, Nas, probably the best hip-hop roster you could imagine and they do nothing. L.A. Reid doesn’t want nothing to do with rappers — it’s nothing personal, I don’t have nothing personal with dude but he makes it known he doesn’t care about hip-hop. So I’m really interested in seeing who’s gonna replace him. Because I know he’s been replaced — so I wanna find out who’s gonna take his spot before I decide what I’m gonna do with Def Jam…The music that we make is responsible for pop, R&B, everything that’s jumping right now…” (SOHH)
Last February, L.A. Reid traveled to Belize to announce acquiring Shyne to Def Jam.
“I have come here to stand by Shyne and to officially kick off our partnership with Island Def Jam Music Group and Gangland Records and so it is really an honour to be here, really very special place. I am here because great people are worthy of travelling many many miles for it and I come here to say that your country is great and I hope you guys know that this is a great man from your country who deserves this kind of respect and who deserves this kind of support. So that is why we are here.” (7 News Belize)
Check out some recent Shyne footage below: