It’s been a remarkable year for G.O.O.D. Music. Not only did Kanye West release his sonically groundbreaking Yeezus LP, but 2 Chainz, Big Sean and Pusha T all released albums in conjunction with Kanye’s label. So why didn’t West decide to bring any of his artists with him on his Yeezus Tour?
MTV News correspondent Sway Calloway asked that question and got a roundabout answer when Yeezy appeared on his “Sway in the Morning” radio show on SiriusXM’s Shade 45 on Tuesday.
“Well, every artist that makes good music is on G.O.O.D. Music,” Kanye reasoned before rattling off a list of names. “Drake on G.O.O.D. Music, Wayne on G.O.O.D. Music, James Blake on G.O.O.D. Music, Frank Ocean on G.O.O.D. Music. You make good music, you’re on G.O.O.D. Music, in my mind.”
Kendrick Lamar has also been celebrated for his good music, in fact his good kid, m.A.A.d city LP is both critically acclaimed and commercially successful. When Kanye announced Kendrick as the opening act on his Yeezus Tour back in September however, some questioned why West would take K-Dot and not one of the artists directly signed to him.
“I’m not marginalized by the brand of the deal that I’ve taken from Universal in order to cut some of my homeboys some checks so that we can work on creative projects together,” he said of his Def Jam-distributed label. “I’m not marginalized by the branding concept of G.O.O.D. Music versus Cash Money. All I do is text Baby like, ’Yo we need to do something together.’ We’re not each other’s enemies.”
Kanye provides a ton of creative direction and inspiration for his team, but he also encourages them to be their own artists he says. “Everybody gotta get their own — maybe it’s just a piano that I bring in for John Legend and executive produce that. Maybe it’s an art package that I do for Pusha or beg him to take a certain song off that I think sounds too commercial,” he said referencing Pusha’s My Name is My Name album, though he didn’t name the song which he begged the Clipse MC to remove from the album.
Though everything within the G.O.O.D. Music crew seems to be harmonious, Kanye does say that he wasn’t too happy with Big Sean’s Hall of Fame LP, which he released in August.
“We didn’t quite get to that with Big Sean on some of the songs that I wanted to take off and stuff,” he told Sway, after the two had a blow-up on air. “It upset me as a hip-hop artist a bit and now he gonna turn up on this next one and we talked it out and everything and that’s what it’s gonna be.”