Influential Leader: Dee-1 (@Dee1Music) Discussion

Hi everyone!

I selected the christian rapper Dee-1 who is known for his Mission Vision movement as the influential leader and the event I will be discussing is the fact that just yesterday his mixtape got banned from being released.

Why is this company/leader successful? David Augustine, Jr., better known as Dee-1, is a christian rapper out of my hometown of New Orleans, La. While New Orleans is known for rappers such as Lil’ Wayne, Hotboys, and Juvenile whose songs are about women, violence and drugs — Dee-1 speaks positivity into the lives of the youth and speaks straight up about issues we are facing in the community as well as the struggles he has faced in his career and life. After turning down a record deal with Lil’ Wayne’s label, Cash Money, he signed with RCA Inspiration in October 2013. He is a leader in the industry because he is changing the music game in New Orleans. I was once told at a conference that nothing positive (musically) comes out of New Orleans, but he is proving all of the naysayers wrong.

Do you admire the company/leader? I admire him because while so many in the industry are creating music for all the wrong reasons such as women, fame and the world’s standards, Dee-1 is putting out music that is positive with the hopes to inspire people to live right and go after their dreams. One of my favorite songs of his is I’m Not Perfect (I’m A Christian) where he talks about walking by faith and living what you say you stand for.

Hows is the current event impacting the organization? The event that has impacted his career and movement is the fact that yesterday his mixtape, Separated At Birth, was set to be released on Orange Mixtapes, but was unable to be released due to the fact that it got banned.

What if Lil Wayne and his hypothetical twin brother were separated at birth? Now, picture that sibling rapping. That’s the scenario Dee-1 was hoping to paint with his Lil’ Wayne-inspired mixtape, Separated At Birth.  “I’m rapping over Lil Wayne beats,” Dee explained. “But I’m doing the more conscious, thought-provoking versions of his well known songs.” Basically, he took Lil’ Wayne’s songs and put a positive spin on them…think Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

Up until yesterday morning, his fans and followers were anticipating the release until he posted on social media that the free mixtape got banned from being released due to legal issues and supposedly violent threats. Fans took to social media with mixed reactions. Some couldn’t understand why he would let that happen, some blamed the label (and the fact that he even signed to a label in the first place, some blamed Lil’ Wayne, while other supported him and the decision to not release it right now. There were even people trying to pay for him to send them a copy on dropbox.

This event is causing a bit of an uproar for Dee-1. He posted about the whole situation on social media yesterday.

All i can say is that 1. this industry is truly crazy smh, 2. some bold actions have taken place behind the scenes, and 3. some people fear what the truth sounds like. Trust me, if no one threatened legal recourse, I would still drop it because I worked hard on this and i think this music would bless all who hear it, and add a much-needed perspective to hip hop.” – Dee-1

Many fans are disappointed because they feel that RCA is to blame for Dee not being able to release the mixtape and feared when he signed with a major record label that they would cause him to change his music. That is exactly what they believe is happening.

“The label did ask him to not release it — basically business reasons,” Tricia Newell, RCA Inspiration’s publicist, said. “Everything was not vetted, and he has an album that he should be working on; that we’re looking forward to promoting. We just felt like it wasn’t the right time for a mixtape. We should concentrate on the full album, get that out and build his anticipation for that.”

Hows is the company handling the event? How should they be handling it?

I believe Dee-1 is handling it the best he can right now by speaking out on social media and not hiding from it. In my opinion and from my experience, I feel if he was going to release such a controversial mixtape, he should have released it without notice instead of promoting it for weeks and letting things boil up to where he has legal issues and threats coming after him. Once a mixtape or album is released, its out there on Youtube and other sharing websites in an instant. Even if they pulled the tape for legal or other reasons, it would still be out there. I think Dee-1 had a good idea when he was creating the mixtape, I just feel that they went about it the wrong way and some are saying that it is making the usually strong-appearing rapper seem weak.

Sources:

MTV Article – Dee-1 Says His Lil’ Wayne Inspired Mixtape Has Been Legally Banned

My Blog Article – Rapper Dee-1’s Mixtape BANNED!

I usually do not post responses from my discussions from school, but I had to share this one.

Awesome and interesting post Ashley! Not a fan of neither Dee 1 nor Lil Wayne but a fan of music of course so anything related grabs my attention. I believe Dee 1 has a great mission statement of just doing whats he’s doing to inspire others and bring light to an otherwise dark world. That’s my mine goal personally and its why I got into music to begin with. Its crazy though, the music industry is an insane one. With every new bit of information I learn about it makes me question why I’m even trying, though the thought of changing it for the better keeps me going. And I think that’s what keeps us all going. We need to get politics out of music and get back to whats its really about. Sure every good artists deserves a decent paycheck and recognition, but then why are there so few good artists with those things? Its all about the next big sensation and what these bastards can make money from. His mixtape got banned why? Because it violated some stupid “right” that they think they own. You can’t really own art and you can’t control or contain it. Self expression is self expression, there’s no price tag. What you quoted from the RCA really infuriated me because its like, “What do you have anything to do with what I’mdoing? You’re promoting my next big album, which this isn’t it, so find something else to deal with.” I agree with you about how he handled it, in my opinion he should’ve just released it because like you said, once its on the internet its there for good. I didn’t research more into this but I just don’t understand how anyone can put a ban on music. What does that even mean?

-Anonymous

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