New Orleans rapper Dee-1, who recently released his Free Lunch & Sallie Mae mixtape, has been building a solid career for himself as an independent rapper out of the south. During a recent interview with Boyce Watkins, Dee revealed that he had a chance to sign to one of the biggest hip-hop conglomerates in the world but turned down the offer.
“[Cash Money CEO] Slim reached out, and me and Slim were talking back and forth for several months. They were trying to sign me to Cash Money,” said Dee. “He flew me to Miami, put me in a studio where they do all their recording, it’s crazy…It didn’t feel right in spirit, it just didn’t. I couldn’t put my finger on it. It’s not like they weren’t gonna offer me money, of course they were gonna offer me money. Of course I’m not a millionaire. It would have been like, ‘This is cool, I could probably do some good with this.’ I never make decisions based on money. I could take a $100 bill and tear it up and then it’s worthless. You can’t do that with your integrity.”
Whether the decision to turn down the deal was a good one or not remains to be seen, Dee still hopes to meet and talk with Lil Wayne–who he never crossed paths with while working out of the Cash Money studio. “Lord willing I’m really praying that this is the opportunity I get,” says Dee of meeting Lil Wayne. “I know that I’ve been placed in hip-hop to impact people’s lives. Not just fans, but possibly artists lives as well. Artists who I could wake up and pick their brain and challenge the way they view life and hip-hop and their platform.”