Wale Explains Why He Left Jay-Z’s Roc Nation And What Happen To Him.
Since his 2009 release Attention Deficit, Wale has had his fair share of label problems. The Washington, D.C. native has recorded one album with Interscope Records, three albums with Atlantic Records, and three albums with Warner Music Group, including his most recent Folarin II endeavor.
Folarin was once a member of Roc Nation’s management team, with Meek Mill, Rihanna, and others. However, following the release of The Gifted in 2013, the two sides broke, which Wale didn’t fully explain until his latest interview on Drink Champs with co-hosts N.O.R.E. and DJ EFN.
Wale was asked about his divorce from Roc Nation attributing his lack of expertise in the music industry to his inexperience.
Around the 60-minute mark, Wale adds, “What happened was, I was in the Hov cycle for a long time.” “There was a moment when J. Cole and I were on tour together. I was opening for him at the moment. They said it was a co-headlining tour, but whatever. I was opening for him, and the set was elaborate and all that.
“And someone in my circle warned me, ‘Every time you come on stage, you’re losing $5,000.’ You’re not only not breaking even, but you’re losing money.’ I don’t recall the city we were at at the time, but I was on the bus and was offered a tour with two other artists. And I wanted to be a part of it.
“So, we were on the way, and I remembered hearing I was losing,” Wale added. That information came from a source close to the establishment.
The performance was sold out, and as a young negga, I couldn’t make sense of it, especially since it was about the time when The Gifted was released and got to No. 2 or No. 1 on Billboard.
“I couldn’t figure it out.” I could be hosting clubs and turning this into a night. I had a true meltdown, and whichever city I was in at the time, there were three days left on the tour, and I just resigned. “I’ve just given up.”
Wale didn’t grasp the Roc Nation levels that separated artists from management, but he knew it was time to leave.