Ras Kass Settles Lawsuit with Capitol Records; Officially a Free Agent
After sitting in limbo at Capitol Records for the past nine years, West Coast MC, Ras Kass, has officially settled his lawsuit with his former label and is now a free agent looking for a new recording home. Ras Kass originally signed with Priority Records in the mid ‘90s, releasing his critically acclaimed album, Soul on Ice, in 1996 and his follow-up LP, Rassassination, in 1998. Shortly after, Priority merged with Capitol Records and Ras Kass got lost in the shuffle. His third album, Van Gogh, was set to drop in 2001, but the label permanently shelved the project. A replacement album, Goldyn Chyld, was then in the works, but once again, Capitol refused to release the LP. Since then, Ras Kass has been engaged in a public dispute with Capitol, looking for his release from the imprint. In May 2004, Ras filed a lawsuit against Capitol Records/EMI for breach of contract, breach of implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, interference with prospective economic advantages and intentional infliction of emotional distress. Capitol/EMI fired back with their own lawsuit in August 2004 alleging Federal Copyright Infringement due to Ras release a mixtape entitled Re-Up. Now, after years of legal setbacks, Ras has finally entered into a settlement agreement with Capitol/EMI. While the exact terms of the deal have not been disclosed, Ras is now able to seek out a new record deal. “I am just relieved and thankful to my management team, my attorney Nyanza Shaw, OGPR and all of the music press that showed me love and support these part few years,” Ras Kass said in a statement. “Now I am anxious to finally be able to pursue my passion, spread my wings and remind the world why Ras Kass is one of the greatest MCs of all time — dead or alive!” Ras Kass will make his first public appearance since the lawsuit on the Cypher Segment on this year’s BET Hip-Hop Awards, which takes place on Saturday, October 13.