Iconic rapper, Kanye West, has sued two record companies in regards to the various deals and agreements he has had with the companies over the years. The first record company being sued is the EMI music publisher. EMI has handled the rights to West’s music since 2003, before his quick rise to stardom. The second lawsuit filed is against Roc-A-Fella Records, Def Jam Recordings, UMG Recordings and Bravado International Group. Roc-A-Fella Records was made famous in the early 2000s for being the creative outlet for massively successful rappers such as West and his former mentor Jay-Z. While neither rapper is still represented on Roc-A-Fella Records, Jay-Z’s success in the 1990s and his influence helped create the label. When Jay-Z brought Kanye West on in the 2000s, Roc-A-Fella became one of the most well known recording studios in hip-hop.
Much of the actual text of the lawsuits has been redacted, making it unclear exactly what the charges are and what West wants out of the lawsuit. A few things are clear however, including the fact that West is partially suing the groups for a substantial amount of money they had made off of the rapper under what he feels are unfair contractual terms. The exact amount of money that West is asking for, however, has not yet been revealed. Another aspect of the paperwork left intact was a segment of text in which West states that one reason he feels entitled to compensation was that he helped revitalize rapper Jay-Z’s career in the early 2000s through his work on The Blueprint. This portion of the documents led some to believe that Kanye West and Jay-Z are fighting right now, but no evidence supporting the idea has come forward.
These lawsuits come at a strange time in West’s career, as the rapper has had many harsh criticisms over the past year due to his political views and erratic behavior. The most recent example of this has come in the form of his, hopefully, upcoming Yandhi record. West has been promising fans the release of his next album since last year, originally saying that the album would be released as early as September 2018. After the date came and went, West stated that the album would be pushed back to be finished and released in November. A few weeks prior to the new release date, West again decided to delay the album and still has not given fans a solid release date. With these lawsuits in full swing, it is highly possible that plans for Yandhi are not the first thing on West’s mind at the moment.