Can Young Money Produce More Than 3 Stars? – The YM Pecking Order


I’m in a bad mood.

I was watching Jersey Shore on my computer, and then I got some email from XXL telling me that I won their blog competition. That’s great, but I was in the middle of watching Jersey Shore. It might be the greatest reality TV show that I have ever seen (“That girl is a double bagger. You wear a bag on your face in case the bag on hers falls off.”). And now XXL is giving me deadlines? Four blog entries before the end of the week? When do I get that check? I’m all about my money. And yet, I find myself exiting the Jersey Shore window, and writing this blog, so that I can “show and prove” to XXL’s millions of readers why I should be given a voice. Shit, talk about pressure. I feel like Dre after a Detox meeting with Jimmy Iovine.

I’m absolutely fascinated with the Young Money roster. Lil Wayne has been handing out record deals over there like food stamps during a recession. It’s kind of funny to see which rapper joins them next. Bizzy Bone? Bow Wow? I guess when you can sell three million copies of a good hip-hop album, 500,000 of a terrible pseudo-rock album, and another soon-to-be 500,000 copies of a pedestrian 10-track record released while you’re in jail, well, it means you have power.

Sorry, Weezy, but no one man should have all that power.

When so many rappers are signed to one label, it mathematically decreases the chances of each rapper ever becoming successful. Does anyone think this guy Gudda Gudda is happy that he has to share a bunk bed with Cory Gunz now? You think Lil Twist is excited now that they can have 5-on-5 basketball games in the backyard court? Is Birdman proud that his son now has so many new friends? The answers are obviously no, no, and yes.

This whole Young Money collective is interesting. It consists of roughly 10-15 rappers, give or take a mic. They all want to be successful, I suppose. Out of the lot, only three or four have tasted real success. And what about the remaining 10, you ask? Well, that’s what I’ve been wondering about.

The gold-selling Young Money album was a good start. But one still wonders how newly elected President Mack Maine plans on telling Gudda Gudda, T-Streets, Lil Chuckee, Cory Gunz, Tyga, Jae Millz, Short Dawg, Shanell, and even Bow Wow that YM won’t be releasing any of their albums. The only priorities on that label are Weezy, Drake, and Nicki. I give an exception to Lil Twist because of his semi-recent local success. But you have to wonder if he’ll ever be able to walk again after his (alleged) Kat Stacks encounter.

Maybe it’s because I’m from New York. I grew up on local legends like Saigon, Papoose, Joell Ortiz, Red Cafe and even Jae Millz, who although are all nice, have little potential to ever go gold or platinum, which makes it next to impossible to release an album on a major. Millz, I’ll tell it to you straight, if Mack still hasn’t; your album is never coming out. And if it does, you won’t get any marketing dollars. You’re stuck in that rap purgatory, in which everyone across the board says you’re nice, but you don’t have that commercial appeal.

One solution might be to keep putting out Young Money compilation albums and mixtapes. Didn’t they all look like one happy family in that “Bedrock” video? Speaking of that video, was I the only one who truly wondered if they all live together in a big house? I could just imagine Lil Chuckee peeking in the shower while Nicki is cleaning off her assets, while Gudda Gudda and Lil Twist stand outside of Drake’s room waiting for his leftover groupies, all the while Mack Maine is shouting at everyone to be quiet from his dainty office, filling out meaningless paperwork. Kat Stacks did say that a lot of the Young Money rappers were roommates, except for Lil Wayne. Though if I were to write anything based on what comes out of that girl’s mouth, it would be a messy situation. I’d probably have to re-write my shit faster than Jay rewrote his “Renegade” verse after Em sent his in.

Moving on.

I just don’t see it happening for most of the Young Money rappers. Bow Wow’s career is over. Tyga had a little bit of MTV shine, but that “Coconut Juice” could only feed so many mouths. I still don’t know who this guy Gudda Gudda is, but I can tell you that he probably won’t ever make it onto the Walmart CD rack. Cory Gunz is nice, but I’m always skeptical of guys who float around the industry without much success. Although his recent drop “Militia Gang” was dope. Like I said, I think Lil Twist has a shot. Mack Maine will get his album out, merely for being the President of the label. One does have to wonder what Mack’s actual position entails. Is it sort of like how Jim Jones is the VP of some A&R division at E1/Koch, which basically means he needs to shout them out every so often? Or is it more like Cortez Bryant, the former YM President, whose managing and marketing performance with Tha Carter III was nearly impeccable. Strangely, I’m inclined to go with the former.

Nicki Minaj, who has Pink Friday coming out in a month, might have been the steal of the century. It seems like people have already forgotten that as little as two years ago, this girl was looking for a deal, despite already being affiliated with Weezy. Then he signed her, probably for peanuts. It’s amazing what a little surgery can do for a chick. Regardless, she is now one of the biggest, loudest rappers in the game. One would think that she just would’ve handled Kat Stacks at the door. The rest of the crew sure didn’t.

YM is the next big label, but there are going to be some disappointed rappers, as well as many future weed carriers. Shlomo

  • Blog-ologist

    I totally agree!!!!!!! But lets be honest…Mack Maine is a figure head…he just has a title…He is Slim’s son, which makes him Birdman’s nephew…Dont believe the hype, Young Money is Cash Money…Baby and Slim are calling all the shots and the true owners. And as you stated earlier, besides Nikki, Drake, Wayne, Twist, and Mack Maine…the rest are just along for the ride…NO ALBUMS…just glad to say their signed, get left over groupies, and carry tha dro’, X, and powder!!!

    • UptownStef

      i think TYGA’s album is coming early next year and he IS being pushed! so i think yall need to be adding his name to the list of cared about rappers from YM. i hardly doubt anything can come out of twist as chuckee has a good buzz but it’s bullshit all the same. we have to wait until after Pink Friday to actually see who’s up next. TYGA might not sell much but he does have the biggest buzz after drizzy and nicki; he’s currently on tour with drake unlike the nobodies on the label so check your stats and info bruh!

  • KiNGPiN

    all the got is nicki, drake, tyga, and wayne. they aint got shit compared to G.O.O.D. Music & Strange Music

  • Q461

    This is obvious. We’ve seen it happen before. Wu-tang got the closest to having the majority of it’s artists to blow up, but they were on different labels and still U-god, Deck and Masta Killa never got much shine. Corey Gunz got talent but he aint never dropping. Same with Jae Millz. The rest of these cats are destined to be weed carriers. They got Drake, Wayne, and Nicki,those 3 will blow but thats all.

  • Blackaristocrat

    You put out another good blog. XXL just needs to cut you the check now. I disagree on some parts though…

    1. The reason most of those guys are signed is for tax write offs. Wayne might had been interested at the time, but keeping some of the artists shelved helps with the taxes. It’s fucked up, but record labels do it ALL the time.

    2. If anyone actually has a shot on the YM roster it’s Tyga, Short Dawg, (Still mad he didn’t pay Too $hort homage for the name.) & Cory Gunz. They’re going to have to put in some serious work if they want to have a shot at getting a release date. That leads us to….

    3. NOBODY gives a damn about Lil Chuckee, Shanell, T. Streets, Jae Millz, (He’s been in the game for over 10 years. It’s over for him. Sad but true. He could spit though.) Gudda, Mack Maine, Bow Wow, (Jermaine Dupri is the best for him, plus he’s on Cash Money not YM, so that means Wayne didn’t see potential for he on the YM roster.) & Twist. There are just there for the experience. Think about it. How come none of these guys were on Drake’s album? I’m going to assume that Drake felt they weren’t good enough to be on it. I’ll put money that only Drake, & Weezy, will be on Nicki’s album.

  • DV8

    Jae Millz needs to see if Wayne and Cam’ron can work out a joint venture deal. A Cash Money/ Diplomat Records project is the only way I see him releasing anything that might sell a little bit. Millz is from Harlem so he would fit right in with them.

    It sucks for Millz because he had that one street banger “No,No,No” feat. Cam’Ron and T.I. and thats really the last real noise weve heard from him.

  • A.mONEy

    cory GUNZ>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

  • http://hulkshare.com/tsj87no8lfqn Sharoyce Antwan

    Your views are mad opinionated, Shlomo. I’ve got to admit that this was very interesting blog though. I would put Nicki and Twist in the same boat as the rest of the YM artists who havent released an album under the imprint. Some artists are good off of eating off of show money and royalties from compilation singles. I know that everyone from this roster has potential, and I also know that the one’s that I choose to route for all the underdogs (Cory Gunz and Short Dawg). Why would you need the limelight when the money isnt as young as people think?

    Sharoyce Antwan
    Savannah GA

    Check out my new shit
    The Heavenly Teabag mixtape
    hulkshare(dot)com(slash)tsj87no8lfqn

  • that nigga

    @DV8, your absolutely right. Thats a very good idea too. Cuz Jae Millz needs Vado right now and that M.H. movement.

  • ff1one@yahoo.com

    Good Blog and Yeah Jeresy Shore is hillarious.
    the dang gon lango alone is worth the watch.

    I’m rolling with Tyga. I mean i never follow trends so i was totally agains ym because they all sound pretty much like they were cloned BUT then i started to listen to tyga. the dude can actually flow.

    he has a good amount of songs. he murked dueces. he can stand on his own.

    i don’t see cory gunz doing anything but ghost writing for wayne.

  • El Tico Loco

    Jae Mills, and Corey Guns aren’t dropping as long as they stay in YM, one because they nicer than their boss, and that’s been the pattern when good rappers sign with other rappers label, if the boss rapper sees the potential of them taking the spotlight from them they will befriend, sign and then give them the runaround, and that’s based on skills and other potential they might feel might be above their own. Examples, Joell Ortiz on Aftermath, Slaughterhouse on Shady, Bobby Creekwater, Stat Quo all on Shady not as nice as Em but they could’ve done something profitable same for Serious Jones on DTP, do you think Luda coulda been outpunchlined?

    I wonder how many of the cat’s and chicks on YM ever asked Curren$y how things really are over there, or they don’t care out of desperation?

    • Ab.Zero

      Now that Curren$y shit you said had me over here dien laughing.. we all know how Curren$y feels about YM..the only one with a chance is Tyga..but he ended his buzz when he started throwing shots at Wiz

      • Sweta

        just saying but they dont have any problems with each other and he hasnt been throwing shots at wiz.
        in an interview wiz even said so and said that they will probably be doing songs in the future to put the rumours to rest.

  • the non hater

    Since youre from new york I see you know nothing of the success of the south New York and the whole east coast never saw the south taking over and you will never see this young money team taking over until its on hot97 like always people aint listening to NO new york rappers so whoelse they gon listen to its young money only ppl on the east hot is Jada Wiz Jay z 50 fab if u wanna talk about records its a recession for yall not for midwest west or south they eating

    • Federal Ranga

      I’m from Miami living in Atlanta and you sound like a fuckin idiot. Most of the rappers are from the south and suck. You wanna talk success? Let’s do some math. 15 artists and only 3 get pushed, promo’d and put out. That’s 20%, moron. What the fuck is success if you only profit off 1/5 of the shit you run?

      Commission!!!

      • Blackaristocrat

        Oh shit what up fam? You haven’t been on ronmexicocity lately. What’s good homie?

    • El Tico Loco

      I’m in the A too, I’ve seen the success of the South and is really nothing to brag about when the majority of “success stories” are only good for one season then they dissapear. Yes there’s the legendary acts but they’re outnumbered by the flash in the pan acts, that get mad promo and airplay while their hot then as soon as the weather breaks is on to the next nigga. The sad thing is that once the artist get played out they don’t even come up in no conversations, they don’t play they shit in the club when they go in the old school set of the night like they do with the NY or even NO music ok they play Pastor Troy and Ying Yang Twins but then is back to Roscoe Dash, Rich Boys and such but who’s gonna last outta that pack? I’m still waiting on A Dam Shame, Intoxicated, Shop Boys, Bonecrusher, where they at? The south has too many bandwagon fans and not enough supporters, some people even turned their back on Jeezy already. SMH

      What up Fed! Link up

  • norcal

    they cant even produce 1 drake is garbage

  • Sharoyce Antwan

    A Young Moey reality show would be Jersey Shore-esque!

    She Aint Had It Like This (prod. by BDB)
    hulkshare.com/i0sxyfgeh9c2

  • Thizzle Wiggle

    Man Millz used to be nice like back in “the statue” days. But now he just sound tired, Vado shittin on cuz.

  • I.N.V

    YM got dope rappers. Wayne Drake and Nicki are all killin the game now and they got more to come with tyga cory gunz short dawg and jae millz

  • Jon Dog

    Thay may have a bunch of “stars” on the label, but there ain’t no tallent there. You can say what you want, but none of these guys (or hood rats) have any tallent. My opinion. Now, let the hating on Jon Dog Begin…… Young Fucks!

  • Mario

    best guest blog ever hands down give this guy a blog section
    Young money, i’m keeping that human being on heavy rotation waiting for that drake mixtape

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  • Andre Price

    Young Money is no different than any other music label. Some acts will be bigger than others. So what are you “actually” trying to say?,”Your not a fan of Young Money”. Well, just say that rather than tell us what seems to be obvious. By the way, It’s only been a year since the Young Money album dropped, and have already produced 2 “new” stars. That’s more than what Rocafella, G-Unit, Dipset, and countless other rap vanity labels has done. From a business stand point, Young Money is Apple of the rap world. Whether you like or dislike their movement, you can’t deny their track worker for launching products.

  • Sharoyce Antwan

    @Andre Price
    You said Young Money produced two new stars quicker than G Unit. Nicki was fucking w/ Wayne since 07′ and Drake since 08. 50 produced a multiplatinum group album (Beg For Mercy 4x platinum), made sure that Lloyd Banks went platinum, Young Buck went platinum, and gave Game the momentum to go 5x Platinum. YM only has two certified platinum acts. Whats good w/ your blasphemy?

    She Aint Had It Like This
    hulkshare.com/i0sxyfgeh9c2

  • Hunter

    YM got nothin on Strange Music, they runnin this

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  • Quint

    I like your blogs man!!! you should definitely ask xxl when the paychecks coming in

  • 504princess

    Please no record label has had 3 top selling artists at one time for a long time. At least any that count. Def Jam/Island Def Jam mainly has Rihanna right now. Sony has a some, yet in different genres, and Bad Boy hasn’t had multiple artists at one time since the Biggie/Faith/112/Total era.

    For a label to have 1 top selling artist now is an accomplishment. 2 even better. That’s just considering the economy, the multitude of free downloads and what not. So let’s be real. Give Wayne a chance to grow with his company and just wait and see what develops. Geez look at GUnit had some of the best rappers and did isht with them. Mobb Deep hasn’t had a hit since Quiet Storm. Lloyd Banks, ummm last few albums not so hot. Tony Yayo a waste of studio time.

  • tical

    i agree with some of this but Jae Millz was in the game long before he signed with YM. And Tyga is doing crazy shit with his mixtape overhaul that he has been putting out. After doing Fan of a Fan type shit, he could probally leave YM and still find a deal somewhere.