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Young Chris Defends Jay-Z Not Taking Roc-a-Fella Crew to Roc Nation

Jay-Z‘s ‘BluePrint 3′ hit the number one spot on the Billboard charts on Wed — a sizable achievement for an album some people feared would not debut in 2009 because of Jay’s decision to leave Def Jam Records earlier this year.

Back in May, Jay-Z officially announced his departure from Def Jam, the label that he had called home for ten years. Hov gracefully thanked Doug Morris and L.A. Reid for their help throughout the years, but confirmed that the $5 million he spent to buy himself out of his contract was the right move for his career. He immediately went to work on building his new Roc Nation label, but recently he has been criticized by fans for not bringing along his old Roc-A-Fella pals with him on the ride to super stardom.

Roc-A-Fella alum, Young Chris, took a minute to put an end to all the hearsay, explaining to Culture IV that contractually Hov wasn’t allowed to take any of his artists with him to the new label. “I spoke with Jay the other day, not on the phone, over e-mail. It was in his contract when he left the label Def Jam, he couldn’t take none of us with him, no artists with him, so that explains why I’m not signed to Roc Nation right now,” he said. Chris explained that although Jay wasn’t allowed to keep his old crew together because of legal bindings, there was no bad blood because of it. “That’s my man. When we see each other, we might talk about the music sh-t, but at the end of the day he’s asking about the boys, how the fam, how the people’s doing back in the city,” he said.

Other Roc-A-Fella artists, including Memphis Bleek, who appeared on stage at Jay-Z’s “Answer The Call,” benefit concert maintain good relationships with the Roc Nation CEO, but the lineup for the new label includes only up-and-comers like North Carolina rapper J. Cole. Bleek has branched out to launch his own company, Get Low Records, while the other artists have scattered to find their own projects.

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