Wow, Diddy, I guess mo’ money really does come with mo’ problems. One of those problems just happens to be one of your fellow artists calling you out on your hypocrisy.
At Clive Davis’ annual pre-Grammy gala, Diddy made waves when he decided to “get real” about the Recording Academy’s propensity to sideline the rap and R&B categories, something they’ve already been taken to task for years ago, with no real indication of learned growth or evolution.
“I say this with love to the Grammys, because you really need to know this. Every year, y’all be killing us, man,” Diddy said, per the Washington Post. “I’m talking about the pain—I’m speaking for all the artists here, producers, the executives—the amount of time that it takes to make these records, to pour your heart out into it, and you just want an even playing field?”
However, Mase, who knew Diddy when he was Puff had some things to say. Something in the vein of, “Whoa now, you got too much dip in your chip.”
The Bad Boy rapper-turned-minister (born Mason Durell Betha) recently took to Instagram to call out Diddy (born Sean John Combs) on his own enabling responsibilities in the industry. The whole caption certainly had a “fed up” aura all around it.
“Your past business practices knowingly has continued purposely starved your artist and been extremely unfair to the very same artist that helped u obtain that Icon Award on the iconic Badboy label,” Mase wrote.
The former Bad Boy artist claimed that 24 years ago, Diddy gave him $20k for his publishing rights, which he added has made him “never want to work” with him again. The deal he signed with Diddy earned him “peanuts,” Mase added.
Mase said he attempted to buy back the publishing rights recently, but was met with a response that said he would only do so if he could match “what the EUROPEAN GUY OFFER him.” He claimed his only other option is to wait until the rights revert back to him. “You bought it for about $20k & I offered you $2m in cash,” he wrote. “This is not black excellence at all. When our race is enslaving us. If it’s about us owning, it can’t be about us owning each other.”
The rapper has said that Diddy is everything he spoke out against, exploiting young musicians as much as those he targeted in the 50-minute speech. “No more hiding behind ‘love,’” he added. “U CHANGED? GIVE THE ARTIST BACK THEIR $$$. So they can take care of their families.”
This entire conversation is very timely, not just because we are fresh off of a controversial and complicated Grammys season, but because Kelis also recently spoke on the trials and tribulations of a shady music industry.
Sure, he may not be able to hear Mase’s cries over the sounds of wealthy, capitalist, shallow-yet-taken-as-deep, inspirational exclusive brunch speeches, but I have a feeling this may make a bit of a reverberation. It is currently trending on Twitter at the time of this article’s publishing, after all.
As such, The Root has reached out to Diddy’s team for comment.