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Hot 97 Program Director Ebro Darden Says Station’s Friction With Lil Wayne is Deep-Rooted

With all the hoopla surrounding Nicki Minaj not performing at Hot 97’s Summer Jam this past Sunday (June 3), the station’s program director Ebro Darden decided to set the record straight earlier today (June 5) live on Hot 97’s morning show with Cipha Sounds, K. Foxx and Peter Rosenberg.

“She could be that mad, but I think it’s deeper than that and it’s not with her,” Darden replied after being asked if the Pink Friday MC was really upset about Rosenberg’s comment on her “Starships” single. “Many years ago, me and Wayne had our differences here at Hot 97.”

Ebro also mentioned calling Wayne after this all began on Sunday after Rosenberg made a remark about the Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded single, before introducing Kendrick Lamar on the show’s festival stage ““I know there’s some chicks here waiting to see the ‘Starships’ later…I’m not talk to y’all now. Fuck that bullshit! I’m here to talk about real hip-hop shit!’”

Regarding the comment, Ebro mentioned not feeling any sort of way after hearing that Nicki wouldn’t be performing. “So What,” he answered when asked about his first reaction to hearing the news. “Summer Jam has never had a headliner, Summer Jam is the headliner. When you buy a Summer Jam ticket, on the ticket it says “Hot 97’s Summer Jam.”

“There’s not an artist’s name on the ticket—see I had already been working on Ms. Hill,” he said about Lauryn Hill’s surprise appearance on the show. “The only reason we didn’t announce Nas was because Nas was supposed to be Nicki’s surprise because we wanted to help Nicki do the Queens thing and do the hip-hop thing.”

“I’ve been riding with [Nicki] since she put out the wrong singles like “Massive Attack,” he continues. “I been with her. We support her. We support the records [that] people don’t like. That’s our job, we’re trying to help this culture be alive.”

Ebro also went on to say that Lil Wayne informed him that YMCMB artists wouldn’t be performing. “I called Wayne actually,” Ebro revealed. “[His] management hit me and was like, ‘Here’s Wayne’s number, give him a call.’”  Soon after Wayne told him the news, Darden hung up on the rapper. “There was nothing else to talk about,” he answered.

Amidst all the drama, Rosenberg’s job was rumored to be on the line following the controversy however, Ebro quickly shot them down. “Stop it, this is Hot 97. You guys know the things we been through here.”—Ralph Bristout (@RalphXXL)

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