Pittsburgh rapper Wiz Khalifa has come forward to speak on recently turning down an opportunity to join Rick Ross‘ Maybach Music record label imprint for an Atlantic Records deal.
According to Wiz, he would much rather continue branding himself rather than be placed behind somebody else’s image.
Though the convo Khalifa describes as cool and chill concluded with a respectful decline, the Pittsburgh native admits that even if his deal with Atlantic were nonexistent, he still would’ve passed on Ross’ offer. “I would’ve kept doing what I was doing till I found something huge [outside of Maybach Music]. I’m all about standing behind my own brand instead of putting myself up under somebody else’s,” he explains. “[Success] might take a little bit longer and take more work, but in the end it pays off because I can stand right up there with my peers and have respect.” (VIBE)
In late July, Wiz announced a deal with Atlantic Records.
“Yeah, I’m signing to Atlantic,” Khalifa said. “We’ve been working on it for a minute. I wanted to make sure that I had records that I was comfortable with before I went to any label or any situation. I wanted to make sure I had my direction so when I take it to them it’s like, ‘Let’s go.’ … It’s a huge honor for [Ross] to even extend a hand like that. [It’s] crazy for him to even look out like that. Me and Ross is always gonna be working. He sees my vision. I think he gets what I’m trying to do. Even if it ain’t no paperwork between me and Ross, it’s gonna be work done between me and Ross.” (MTV)
Ross had publicly offered Wiz a chance to join a roster which includes his rap crew, Triple C’s.
“You know, Wiz, what’s happening, this is the Boss, Ricky Ross, Teflon Don,” the rapper said in an interview. “You know we spoke of this in the last week or two, but my question is even more personal that I’d love to ask you right now. What would it take for us to close the deal, Wiz Khalifa and Maybach Music? I feel like the homie is a superstar. We discussed this last week. He’s most definitely loyal to his team. But like I told him, there’s always more to get.” (MTV)
Wiz also caught people by surprise after recently turning down a chance to tour with Drake this summer.
“It just lets me know that I’m doin’ what I need to be doin’ as far as stayin’ relevant and stayin’ poppin’. But I think to keep me poppin’ and keep me relevant I gotta stay buildin’ on top of what I’m doin’ and what I been doin’. No disrespect to cuz or anybody else who might wanna see me do some more collaborative things, but to keep buildin’ and keep my brand as strong as what it is, I gotta keep focusin’ on what it is. This is my first tour that I got comin’ up, the Waken Baken tour, I gotta at least kick that off and make that it what it is so we can do ten more…I’m real happy for Drake and real proud of Drake. I was lookin’ on the Internet and that [he] made $10 million this year. So maybe when I make $10 million then we can tour.” (XXL Mag)
Check out some recent footage of Wiz Khalifa below: