Wendy Day has been responsible for over a billon dollars in album sales, meaning she’s involved in shifting units comparable to Jay-Z and P-Diddy combined. But the 52-year-old isn’t a label shark profiting from manipulating artists into bad deals. She’s dedicated her life to building careers, sharing industry insight and negotiating fair contracts for rappers. In 1992, Wendy used her sizable life savings, stocks, Condo and BMW to fund non-profit organization Rap Coalition, a move that former Bad Boy accountant Bert Padell critiqued as “fucking crazy.” Day brokered some of the biggest deals in music history including Master P’s No Limit Records signing to Priority and Cash Money’s $30 million distribution deal with Universal, which allowed them to keep 85% of their royalties. The outspoken industry veteran held nothing back during our chat and has enough stories to fill several autobiographies. In part one of this interview, we discussed what 2pac planned for his next album, the time Freddie Foxx put a gun to Birdman’s head in public, 50 Cent crushing Young Buck, and a possible collaboration between Slick Rick and Kendrick Lamar.
Are rappers making anywhere near as much money as in the 90s or early 2000s, when there was a lot of disposable cash?
No, because the economy has scaled and shifted. It used to be that No Limit would put out an album and it would go platinum in a couple of weeks, if not in a week. To make a comparison, this year in 2014, no [rap] album has gone platinum. The economies are so different. It’s just a different world today than it was back in the mid ’90s. No Limit kind of lost their lustre around ’97 and one of the selling points when I was doing the Cash Money deal was that No Limit was over.