Nelly’s new album 5.0 arrived at No. 10 on last week’s Billboard 200 albums chart after selling an underwhelming 63,000 copies in its first week. The Dirty Down South rapper thinks his label, Universal Motown, is partly to blame for the album’s weak performance.
Nelly statemented the following on his Twitter account:
“A record deal is a 50/50 partnership,” he wrote on Saturday afternoon. “As an artist it’s your job to provide the record company with music that they (record company) can sell! Thing about the partnership is that [in] the public eye the responsibility is not 50/50! [T]he artist is always the 1 who catches 90% of the blame. When an artist doesn’t deliver sufficient material they (artist) gets its budget cut for next album or worse dropped from the label!
“So not only is the label [your] partner but also disciplinarian and 90% of the time the one who decides if the partnership continues,” he continued. “No doubt [when] an artist doesn’t deliver a song that does crack top of the charts or even top 10 the label is quick to say artist didn’t deliver. So [in turn] the artist must bare the brunt of that failure and take responsibility and consequences as handed out by his or her label!!
“So [whose] fault is it when a artist gives the label not only a #1 hit but [their] first top 40 #1 [in] label history,” he asked. “[S]ell 2mill [in] singles [in] 2.5 month[s]. Who should be held responsible when an artist has a history for selling records so [it’s] not like a new artist [and no one] knows his [or] her name? Benefit of the doubt: Maybe [no one] wants to hear music from that artist? [W]ell if that was true then the artist would not have a #1 song! Benefit of the doubt: Maybe [no one] is checking [for] the artist anymore? Well if that was true then how do [you] explain selling 2 [million] singles [in two and half months]?
“I care less about haters [you can’t] hate on #1 song [and] 2.5 [million] singles” he added. “[B]ut the fact is that [someone] need[s] to holdup [their] end of the partnership! If the music wasn’t good how do u get to #1 and 2.5mill!! [B]ut if folks say they didn’t even no [when] the album came out????? If [you] only ship 200 [thousand] of an album how many are u f#cking [trying] to sell?? [T]he artist [doesn't] control that nor does he or she control marketing. “5.0″ Every[one] [loves the] album [and] say its crazy! So [when you] hear folks say they [didn’t know] it was out [or] there were hardly any [in] the store! WTF?”