After a record-setting, 12-year run with Eminem and Dr. Dre’s respective Shady/Aftermath imprints, 50 Cent has confirmed his departure from the labels and a new deal with Universal Music Group’s Caroline Records.
In a prepared statement, 50 Cent thanked is mentors while alluding to the surprise move being spear-headed by creative differences.
I’ve had great success to date with Shady/Aftermath/Interscope and I’d like to thank Eminem and Dr. Dre for giving me an incredible opportunity. I’ve learned so much from them through the years. I am excited to enter this new era where I can carry out my creative vision.
Founded in 1973, Caroline Records has primarily served as a jazz and rock label, putting out records from The Misfits, White Zombie, Hole and Ben Folds Five. 50 Cent, who’s sold over 14 million records in his solo career, will be the label’s sole rap act.
Eminem added his own encouraging words for his former protegé’s new venture.
Both myself and Shady Records are grateful to have had the chance to play a part in 50′s career. Shady simply would not be what it is without 50 Cent. I’ve developed a great friendship with 50 over the years, and that’s not going to change. We know 50 will have success in his new situation, and we remain supporters of both him and G-Unit.
50’s last solo album, the gold-selling Before I Self-Destruct, was released in 2009. Since then, he’s released several mixtapes, including The Big 10, The Lost Tape (w/ DJ Drama), and 5 (Murder by Numbers). His next album will be the much-delayed Street King Immortal.
It’s way too early to make predictions on how this will play out. On one hand, you could argue this might be problematic considering Caroline Records lack of previous work with Hip-Hop artists, let alone someone of 50’s caliber. On the other hand, no other rap act ensures 50 would likely get a lot of attention and as he put it, allow him to make music without the pressure of meeting his previous success.
What’s your gut reaction — good or bad for 50’s career?