It looks like yet another artist is unhappy with Def Jam as Chicago crooner Jeremih lashed out at the label over the weekend, upset at the promotion of his latest album,Late Nights, which dropped last week.
The news comes quickly on the heels of Jeremih’s performance alongside fellow Chicago hometown act Chance The Rapper on Saturday Night Live and raises new questions about the reason for the long wait between this new album and his 2012 release, All About You.
While many assumed that the singer was content to drop hot singles, which he has been doing ever since, it appears as though Def Jam may have been less than supportive throughout the rollout of Late Nights.
Now, while a back and forth between artists and labels is as old as the music itself, Jeremih may have a point this time. In a series of tweets over the weekend he explained that despite the project being released as a sort of surprise, the project was allegedly listed at $18.99 and no physical copies made it to the stores, going on to say only “6-7 copies a piece” were shipped to Best Buys.
While I totally get the frustration here, as it is a record label’s role to provide these services, one also has to question Jeremiah’s calling out of those in charge. For one, his music certainly isn’t lacking for national promotion as he’s stacked up hit after hit for the last two years, while waiting for his album’s release, receiving plenty of radio play during the interim. While we definitely don’t know everything that went into the release of his latest project, I can’t help but feel like the answer to Jeremih's problems are in front of him.
If he’s upset at his current situation he doesn’t necessarily have to look far for a new direction. Sharing the stage with Chance and the Social Experiment, who became the first independent act to grace perform on SNL, Jeremih has to know that he can take things into his own hands moving forward, that path is currently being blazed. As always, the lesson here is that artists need to be careful when they sign on that dotted line.