Lil Wayne and Tyga are just two of what's becoming a revolving door of artists revolting against Cash Money Records. In an interview with DJBooth.Net, Chicago rapper Mikkey Halsted detailed what sounds like a terrible experience under Birdman’s empire.
Halsted, who saved a then unknown Kanye West from joining Cash Money, revealed some questionable business practices, like Birdman being extra-cheap at McDonald’s, and owing him half a million bucks.
See excerpts below.
On Birdman Trying to Change Mikkey’s Style:
“We didn’t see eye to eye creatively and he was trying to make me do something, be something that I wasn’t. I was wearing Polo, they only wanted me to wear white T-shirts and Reeboks. It felt like real prison over there. I was trying to explain to him that a clean cut rapper will work. Where I’m from we do this, we do that, this is what we do. Why would you sign me if you want me to be like I’m from New Orleans? I can’t go home and be around my friends if I go and change and act like I’m from you guys, from y’all.
And he was like, ‘You should go get tattoos on your neck,’ and I’m like, ‘Listen, fuck that, I’m not doing shit like that man.’ I can’t even go home and look at my brother and my grandmother in their face if I change. I’m not doing that s**t man."
On Birdman Being Cheap at McDonald's
“I’ve seen Baby [Birdman] over there with $50,000-$100,000 spread out on the bed and people that’s in his own family are asking him to give them McDonald’s money. He would give somebody $10 and ask for change back. So, that’s the kind of person he was. It was just a lot of bad business man, that I’ve seen done and you know, it’s only so far as I can talk about it…until I get my money.”
On Money Birdman Owes Him
“I feel I’m owed probably a half a million dollars right now. After I saw what happened after Kanye got his money [Mikkey had to fight to get Kanye paid] I should have tried to get off the label. But I always had hope. I left over 75 songs [with Cash Money] because back then they didn’t just give you the music. It wasn’t like we were using email. We couldn’t hear it. None of this s**t [the music I recorded] ever saw the light of day.”
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