While on the Breakfast Club morning show, Diddy referred to his 2020 speech where he called out the Grammys for not showing black music the love and respect it deserves and said that he also had to be accountable within himself, which led to him deciding to return the artists publishing.
“When I had went and called out the Grammys. I also had to make sure that I had also looked from within. Once you start asking for change in this world, you have to look within and be a part of that change. This was actually done two years ago,” he said.
He continued, “It was more of me just evolving as a businessman, a person that really wants change in the world, and progress importantly. You can have change but not progress and you know it was the right thing to do. It was the right thing to do and it’s the frequency that I’m in. the love frequency. If it wasn’t for these people that like you know have helped me with all these records. If anything like that just doing the right thing, that’s just the frequency I am in.”
He added that two years ago, he began to work with his lawyers to reassign the rights of the songs and noted that his contracts with the artists were valid.
Among those whose rights have been reassigned are The LOX, Ma$e, The Notorious B.I.G, and others.
The discussion of artists from the 90s who thrived during their early careers but were ‘broke’ down the line has sparked a discussion in the hip-hop community about the advantage taken on artists during that era.
One such artist was DMX, whose real name is Earl Simmons, who at the time of death was insolvent and millions of dollars in debt. His situation has led to the criticism of labels from back in the day and their treatment of artists.
However, some fans and even one of Diddy’s artists have spoken out as they agree that the rights to music are worthless, especially if they have been exploited commercially for over two or three decades.
Mark Curry, who was featured on Diddy’s hit single “Bad Boy for Life,” released in 2001, revealed that the publishing being returned was a slap in the face since many Bad Boy artists suffered financial hardships despite making hits after hits which Diddy owned and prospered from.
“I said why don’t you just keep it and pay me? I don’t want the publishing; I want the money,” Curry said while revealing that he received his publishing long before the current tranch of artists.
“Ever had somebody owe you 50 dollars.. when you needed it back.. they didn’t pay you… then by the time they do pay you. The 50 dollars doesn’t mean the same as it did when you needed it? ‘That’s how I feel… I wanted that when it was making money… not after it’s all gone. what ima do with that? In fact it’s an insult,” he said.
In the same interview, Diddy also shed light on his current relationship with Masewho he calls his brother despite their bitter back and forth over the years.
“I didn’t have no problems with people. Me and Ma$e, we brothers,” the hip hop mogul said. “I got unconditional love for Ma$e. I don’t know if me and Ma$e will stop arguing, but I still love Ma$e. I give him thanks for really helping launch my career as an artist. [He] was there with me from the beginning. Me and Ma$e also spoke and it was just, like, real conversation because even if I don’t agree with Ma$e, he was a catalyst for me to look from within.”
In the meantime, Diddy has been busy promoting his new album, The Love Album: Off The Grid. The project features artists The-Dream, Busta Rhymes, Swae Lee, Summer Walker, The Weeknd, 21 Savage, Justin Bieber, Jazmine Sullivan, Ty Dolla $ign, Kehlani, Mary J. Blige, John Legend, and others.