Damon Dash Relaunches Roc-A-Fella Records
Dame told MTV News that he plans to relaunch the notorious label this Spring, with the release of Curren$y‘s album ‘Pilot Talk’ on June 15. He explained that after presenting Curren$y with a Roc-A-Fella chain a few months ago, as a sign of friendship, he decided to turn it into the real thing. “I think we just having fun, really,” Dash said, explaining his bond with the New Orleans rapper. “[Curren$y] inspired me to dust off the chains. We brought ’em out for kicks, just ’cause we could. Then we was like, F— it, let’s put it through Roc-A-Fella.’ It was really more something he wanted to do. Basically, ’cause we havin’ such a good time, and the opportunity’s there, we was like, ‘Why not?'”
Roc-A-Fella Records, which was co-founded by Jay-Z, Damon Dash and Kareem “Biggs” Burke, saw an unparalleled wave of success and notoriety with a lineup of artists that included Memphis Bleek, Freeway and Cam’ron. But when the friendship and partnership between Dash and Hov crumbled, the label was left in the dust since Jay-Z retained sole ownership of the brand. Jadakiss‘ 2009 album ‘The Last Kiss’ was the final release on Roc-A-Fella Records.
According to Dash, rights to the brand have now been transferred, making it possible for him to relaunch the label with the help of Def Jam and label executive L.A. Reid. “Def Jam or Universal bought the brand. I think the “beef” [with us and Jay-Z] was that Jay made it clear he didn’t want me or Biggs to be a part of it. That’s really where it was at. Now that he doesn’t work for Def Jam anymore, he doesn’t have the right to use the name,” Dash said. “So there’s no reason for us not to use it. it’s there, and it’ a brand that’s not being used. So I was like, ‘I’ll take it.’ It always meant something to me.”
Dash, who has had plenty of recent success with his New York-based gallery DD172, says that the current re-incarnation of Roc-A-Fella Records will focus on friendship like it was always intended to. “It’s a way more positive movement,” he said about the future of the label. “It’s what I wanted Roc-A-Fella, what I thought it should be 10 years after I started it.”