As a high school kid in 1998, I was taking note of a new wave that was making its way into everybody’s TVs, radios, walkmans, & discmans. This new wave had everybody wanting to stunt on everybody they knew just for the hell of it. Not to mention that this new wave also had everybody referring to everybody they knew as “whoadie”. This new wave I’m speaking of was Cash Money Records. Now keeping in mind this all went down (as I noticed through my eyes) back in 1998, Cash Money Records was just starting to make an impact as No Limit Records was on their way out.
Also in 1998, brothers & co-owners/co-CEOs Bryan "Birdman" Williams (then known as Baby) & Ronald "Slim" Williams had just signed a $30 million P&D (pressing & distribution) plus a $3 million advance deal with Universal Records (now known as Republic Records) for their empire, Cash Money Records. Cash Money would sign this deal off the strength of The Hot Boys (consisting of Juvenile, B.G., Young Turk, & then 17-year-old Lil Wayne), who would be the driving force for the record label in in the early years of its partnership with Universal. Around 2002, the empire would start falling apart as The Hot Boys broke up with Turk, B.G., & Juvenile leaving Cash Money because of financial disputes with Birdman & Slim.
The mid-2000s brought about new signings such as Lil Mo, Boo & Gotti, KeKe Wyatt, & Mikkey (now known as Mikkey Halsted). Lil Wayne (who stayed behind after The Hot Boys disbanded) would start to be the driving force of Cash Money Records around this time-frame. As for the rest of the of the new generation of Cash Money artists, the ride would not last for them as they were getting dropped from the label or they left the label for various reasons. But with all of this going down, however, Cash Money kept it moving nonetheless.
With constant resilience & reinventing, Cash Money Records would sign a new generation of artists such as Drake & Nicki Minaj (who are currently part of Cash Money’s sub-label Young Money Entertainment which is part-owned by Lil Wayne [who stayed behind after the mid-2000s drama]) plus create a management label called Rich Gang (also owned by Birdman) with Soulja Boy & Reek Da Villain as the brand’s only artists (as of press time). Today, there’s another shake-up at Cash Money Records with the label being the target of constant lawsuits & over half their artist roster leaving the label for various reasons.
Despite my gripes with the current roster of Cash Money Records, I admire their resilience even though I feel they should have hung it up after The Hot Boys broke up as the whole world notices the pattern of what goes on at the label. With various lawsuits & drama surrounding Cash Money, hopefully they can stand the test of time with everything they have on their plate.
Do you feel that Cash Money Records can still go a few more years after the smoke clears or is it time for them to hang it up??? Let it be known in the comments box below!!!