Unless you’re on Koch Records, getting that Sheek LaRouche money, it must be pretty difficult to make a buck selling rap albums. How else to explain the situation with albums like Rhymefest’s Blue Collar, which is currently set to fail miserably July 11th, and the Clipse’s Hell Hath No Fury, which was recently pushed back to God knows when.
Obviously, it’s somewhat difficult to say, not being privy to the goings-on over at Jive Records and Trustfund Records. Maybe Mark Ronson, intent on proving his street cred to his new black friends, has developed a nasty PCP habit and just keeps forgetting to put the Rhymefest album out. Crazier things have happened.
Most likely though, the problem with both of these artists is that they don’t have a hit. If anybody liked “Brand New,” I’m sure Blue Collar would’ve been out way back in 2005, when it was originally scheduled. Who knows how much Trustfund dropped on Kanye’s production, not to mention the video for that bloody miscarriage.
Similarly, I’m sure the apartheid regime that runs Jive is decidedly non-plussed that they spent all that money on the video for the Clipse’s “Mr. Me Too” for no good reason. Those cats might have buzz among the Sean Fennessey crowd, but I haven’t heard a Clipse song on the radio since like ’03.
Interestingly enough, I heard the Rhymefest album recently and that shit’s incredible. I only copped it in the first place just so I could rag on it for my own personal amusement, but come to find out, it’s one of the better albums to come out in the past couple of years. Supposedly, the Clipse’ album is really good, too.
Unfortunately though, an album isn’t going to sell very well just because it’s good. Busta Rhymes’ album had beats and guest rappin’ by a host of hip-hop luminaries (even a few dead ones), and it still managed to sell less its first week out than Tony Yayo’s Thoughts of a Predicate Felon. The reason? Nobody liked its wack-ass singles.
I’m sure it doesn’t help matters that the artists spend so much money producing these albums in the first place. You can hardly blame a label like Jive or Trustfund for being a bit apprehensive about putting these albums out after they spent like $6 gozillion recording and promoting them. If these bad boys brick, some crackety-crack might be out of a job.