Before 2006 became the year that rap took a monumental, life-altering shit, it was supposed to be the year of the mixtape DJ. Fawning stories were published in the otherwise semi-reputable New York Times and USA Today about how the mixtape DJ had become the new tastemaker in modern day hip-hop.
Want to know who’s going to be the next 50 Cent and/or… um, okay 50 Cent? Look no further than the new tape by DJ Such n’ Such. And who can blame the record industry for getting their panties all in a bunch after the mixtape scene’s own Fiddy Cent sold more albums from ’03 to ’05 than Elvis and the Beatles combined?
The record industry is, after all, built on hits. The Roots aren’t going to subsidize themselves, now are they? [Zing!]
As such, a lot of dudes connected to the mixtape scene were on the come-up this year. Mixtape DJs like XXL’s own DJ Drama got their own vanity labels and so-called major label mixtapes. Meanwhile, mixtape rapper Papoose got a deal with Jive Records for $1.5 million. That’s even more than Dr. Dre and Eminem gave Fiddy Cent!
[I was even thinking about getting into the mixtape game myself, except I’m not sure if my laptop has the right ports. Shit, for that kind of money, I might be in the market for an upgrade. I’ll see if Elliott wants to put up the money in exchange for some of my side-action once I hit the big time.]
Only thing is, none of these d-bags have produced any actual results. Granted, 50 Cent used to sell a lot of records, but at least he was an actual rapper. Recent major label mixtapes by DJs Kay Slay and Khaled have only sold nine copies combined. I’m pretty sure even a mixtape by DJ Heartless Bastard could beat those numbers.
Which I suppose makes sense. No one buys an album to hear a DJ anyway, even if it’s a good DJ. And a lot of these d-bags don’t even know how to scratch records. If you notice, all of the most popular mixtapes are the ones that feature prominemt artists. I doubt that the people who buy these things give a rat’s ass who put them together.