Big Sean has been signed to Roc Nation for a few years now but his new project is his first release since the deal was made. Sean probably has the most anticipated album of the year and he did not disappoint. This blog isn’t about Sean and his new project but what it means for an emcee to sign a deal with a label like Roc Nation. Big Sean is now rocking a Roc-A-Fella chain! It’s not an original but it was made just for the Detroit emcee. Just looking at the jewelry piece just reminds me of the other record labels that were considered to be top tier and to receive a chain from any of them meant that you were a part of Hip Hop History.
The Roc wasn’t the only coveted record label that gave our chains to their signees. No Limit Records, Ruff Ryders, Cash Money Records, Death Row Records, Terror Squad, and so many others had aspiring Rappers hoping that they would one day have their idol wrap a chain around their neck on stage at a major show. Record labels were a movement once upon a time because most of them operated “independently” or so they thought they did. You don’t see that type of comradery with multiple major artists on a major label. The only label that is still operating in that capacity is Cash Money’s Young Money Records and TDE.
With a lot of Rappers remaining independent and only signing distribution deals a lot of young Rappers aren’t bringing their friends along for the ride. The buddy of a Rapper these days could only get some followers and a bunch of likes off of them. A$AP Mob seemed to be on their way but even their headliners have taken a backseat to other mainstream artists like Drake. Drake is essentially the only one moving the needle on OVO. Gone are the days of seeing Rappers enjoy their spoils with close friends. That was made evident by Cam’ron’s live stream Saturday night discussing his lost friendship with Jim Jones. Rap seems to be an individual sport now a days and that’s a shame because the youth see this and start to frown when they have to do a group project at school. Life is team sport and none of them are doing it alone and that goes for Hip Hop too.