Thanks to Lil Wayne's ex-lawyer Ronald Sweeney, who is suing Weezy, we learned that Wayne sold his masters to Universal for $100 million.
Or so we thought. According to an article on Music Business Worldwide, Wayne did cut a $100 million masters' deal with Universal in June. However, it was for his imprint Young Money's masters, not his own
Meaning Universal now owns Drake's pre-2018 catalog (and Nicki Minaj's and Tyga's, etc.), and got it for a pretty good price, considering what Taylor Swift's masters ($450 million) and Boby Dylan's publishing ($300 to $400 million) recently got.
The suit reads: “Plaintiffs are informed and believe… that, subsequent to [Sweeney’s] termination [as Wayne’s manager], specifically in or about June of 2020, Lil Wayne was able to sell the Young Money Masters to Universal Music Group for in excess of $100 Million.”
Whether or not that price-tag is accurate, this piece of information chimes with something MBW observed earlier this year: Drake’s new records in 2020, including hit Toosie Slide and the Dark Lane Demo Tapes mixtape, have been released on OVO – Drake’s own label – under exclusive license to Republic Records. However, all of Drake’s big albums up to and including Scorpion (2018) show a recording copyright credit of Young Money/Cash Money on platforms like Spotify.
It therefore seems Drake has inked a new deal with Universal Music Group and Republic (via OVO) for his latest recordings. But, with UMG having acquired Young Money, the major record company now owns the star’s pre-2018 catalog.
What do you think about the deal Universal got from Wayne?