On Wednesday, news spread far and wide that music mogul Sean “Diddy” Combs didn’t want his adopted son, Quincy, to appear on Fox’s hit show Empire because of a squabble over money and song rights.
According to the New York Post’s Page Six, Quincy Combs was offered a spot on Lee Daniels’ soap hip-hopera, but his father—knowing a thing or two about the music biz and publishing rights—said no-go to Fox’s contract offer. Empire, like Fox’s other hit American Idol, has its performers sign over a portion of their music rights in exchange for the (obvious) exposure of the show. Super-producer Timbaland is the executive music producer for the show, and the songs that appear on Empire are ones that he has produced and written, with the show’s stars providing vocals.
But—and this is a pretty big but—E! Online is claiming that its sources at Fox say Quincy Combs was never offered a spot on Empire at all. There were some preliminary talks, but there was no audition and no role offered.
So what is this really about?
Sayeth E! Online: “Quincy is an actor and singer who just released his first single, ‘Friends First.’”
Quincy Combs’ biological father is actually R&B singer Al B. Sure. Combs adopted Quincy during his long-term relationship with Quincy’s mom, Kim Porter. The new song and video for “Friends First” (with all 81,000 of its YouTube views) sounds a lot like classic Al B. Sure meets Ryan Leslie’s “You’re Not My Girl.”
It’s not a bad song—but it’s also probably safe to say that Quincy Combs wouldn’t mind having some of that sweet, sweet Empire buzz to generate some attention for his burgeoning music career. I also wouldn’t put it past a master hype man like Sean Combs to ride the success of a show—that sometimes looks like a ’90s Dynasty version of his, Jay Z’s and Russell Simmons’ lives all smashed together—to benefit his son.