So far, Nick Cannon’s foray into radio as the solo host on his eponymous hip-hop talk show with Power 106 (Nick Cannon in the Mornings) has been off to a good start.
The latest to join him in the hot seat was Birdman on Wednesday (June 26). The Cash Money CEO touched base on the state of hip-hop, his acting debut in Nick's forthcoming She Ball, and Cash Money projects currently in the works. Spoiler alert: a Birdman biopic is underway.
Here are our top six takeaways from the candid interview:
For as long as Birdman has been on the scene, the Cash Money CEO hasn't been known by anything else but Stunna to a few friends. The rap mogul, whose real name is Bryan Williams, had Nick shook when he revealed that Baby was actually his first nickname and it was given to him by his mother.
“Baby is the hot name right now,” Nick exclaimed. “DaBaby, Lil Baby. You the original Baby. How do you feel about everybody using that term now?”
“I just think that’s something they probably grew up with, that name,” Birdman proposed before explaining how he got the nickname. “In my case, I was born without a name. My momma named me Baby as a kid, so I thought that was my real name.”
While discussing Birdman's omnipresent influence in Miami, Louisiana and New York alongside Cash Money's recent venture into the West Coast, Nick let it drop that not too many poeple knew that Birdman had at one point lived in Canada.
“Yeah, I grew up in Prince George, Canada,” the Louisiana native confirmed.
Born in New Orleans, the rap mogul spent part of his childhood in Canada after an uncle took him and his siblings in for a few years following the death of his mother. At some point, they wound up in a children's home before his father gained full custody.
Continuing the conversation on Birdman's upbringing, Nick expressed that Birdman's rags-to-riches story deserves a film treatment ala N.W.A's biopic, Straight Outta Compton, or American Gangster.
The rap mogul confirmed that he is cooking something up but didn't share much else. The label head wasn't concerned that he hadn't been approached previously about a biopic.
"You know how I look at it, though? I think I deserve it ‘cause I worked hard for it," the Cash Money co-founder agreed.
He continued: "Sometimes in life — rest in peace to Nipsey [Hussle] — while you here, they don’t give it to you. They wait ‘til you gon’ and want to give it all to you."
On the film front, the rap mogul said that Cash Money Films is currently working on adapting Iceberg Slim's iconic book series into a film, which he bought the rights to through Cash Money's publishing imprint, Cash Money Content.
"I think radio is a helluva job," Birdman admits while laughing before getting serious.
"Some people take it completely out of context. They can be very disrespectful and downplay the artist," he said. "I think as an artist and as a man, 'cause we men and we humans first. So when the disrespect come, I know they got to do a job, but it's still a line, and I feel a lot of them cross that line. As a man and as a person, you got to step up and check that s**t."
Yes, you read that right. Birdman wants to hit one trillion streams, although it wasn't clear if he meant Cash Money as a whole or just himself.
For reference, Drake, who is the most streamed artist on the planet right now, hit 8.2 billion streams on Spotify alone last year. The 6 God's hit single "God's Plan" brought in one billion by itself, so with Cash Money's 20-year track record, it's more plausible than it sounds.
"I’m already at 400 billion streams," Birdman claimed. "My goal is to get a trillion streams. I done did over 600 million on iTunes sales and over a billion sales in music, and then made over three billion with Universal."
Watch the full 19-minute interview below to hear Birdman's biggest guilty pleasure, his favorite actor, and more:
(Photo: Gabriel Olsen/Getty Images)