By Zack O'Malley Greenburg & Steve Forbes
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Extra info for Empire State of Mind How Jay-Z Went From Strfice
Just weeks before the release of Jay-Z’s fourth album, Vol. 3 . . The Life and Times of S. Carter, a brawl broke out in the VIP section of the Kit Kat Club in Manhattan’s Times Square. Amid the scuffle, Jay-Z confronted record producer and onetime friend Lance “Un” Rivera, who’d been rumored to be bootlegging copies of Life and Times after coproducing the song “Dope Man” on the album. 21 Jay-Z turned himself in for questioning the next day and was released on $50,000 bail. ,22 and maintained his innocence throughout what turned into nearly two years of legal wrangling.
When you hear NWA, you hear gun killin’, drug sellin’, but you hear it in such a very plain English that when you get this guy who’s extremely crafty with words, he’s probably going all the way over your head. ” Entertainment lawyer Donald David believes the major labels turned Jay-Z down for a different reason. “They were scared of the violence,” he says. “There was still the East-West rivalry concept, and people were a little bit concerned about the content and lyrics of his music. ”5 So Jay-Z and Dash pooled their resources with a silent partner, Kareem “Biggs” Burke, to start their own record label, Roc-A-Fella Records.
Most record labels dispatched a promotional van for each of their artists, with name, picture, and logo plastered all over the outside. “Inside the van was all the peripherals—posters, stickers, CDs, all that stuff— and it was run by your street team people,” explains Serch. “Roc-A-Fella had a Mercedes E-Class 320, white, with the Roc-A-Fella logo on the hood. And that was their promo vehicle. ”29 Dash wasn’t saying that Jay-Z and other Roc-A-Fella artists should stop rapping about designer clothes and high-end liquor; rather, that they should be compensated for the endorsements—or create their own brands.
Empire State of Mind How Jay-Z Went From Strfice by Zack O'Malley Greenburg & Steve Forbes