LA Reid has been celebrated a lot this past week, as the Epic Records CEO has hit the rounds in honor of his new book, "Sing To Me," hit shelves this week. The veteran music biz leader visited The Breakfast Club this morning (February 4) and dished on a lot of topics, including his discovery that he was Pebble's side dude, responding to DMX's past claims and his brotherhood with Babyface.
On Being The Side Dude With Pebbles
I never put it together that I was the side dude. No comment. You’re something else. I’m still getting my arms around….I was the side piece?
On Whether LaFace Records Gets The Credit It Deserves
We didn’t stand up and say no to stuff. We didn’t tag our records. We didn’t approach it that way, it was purely about the music and the artists. I’m very happy with the respect that I feel that we get or the respect that I get for my career. It was never about stand up and be notice, that wasn’t what it was about. It wasn’t an ego trip. It was about being a supporter of talent and helping music grow. And helping the quality of music be great.
On His Reputation In Hip-Hop And Responding To That DMX Story
Def Jam did quite well when I was there, just to get the record straight. It did really well. I embrace music, I embrace culture. I never embrace any of it from a position of a genre. I never separate hip-hop from R&B from pop music. It was either good or wasn’t good to me. Either the artist mattered or the artist didn’t mattered to me. I didn’t grow up putting things in boxes. I didn’t know the different. I still don’t care about that difference. I love Kanye West. And I love Rihanna. And I love Mariah Carey. I don’t know if they’re all the same, but they’re greats.
Signing Rick Ross And Responsibility To His Artists
I’m supportive of the culture. I like to think of myself as not a fair-weather friend, but someone that’s committed to your career. So, it doesn’t matter to me…I think great people are always one hit away from massive success. And even if it isn’t massive success, it’s, Do these artist deserve a home? I look at it this way: the Rolling Stones don’t have to look for a recording contract; Bruce Springsteen doesn’t have to look for a contract, and he’s been in the business how many years? I don’t want any black talent to wonder, why don’t I have a home? Barbara Streisand still has a home. Does she still sell like Mariah? Like that? I don’t know. That’s not my business, but the point is, she has a home. She’s taken care of. So it’s my job to take care of.
On Babyface, Their Falling Out And Making Up
He was very much a part of it, the writing. That’s really my brother. We have very honest conversations about things. Even things I’ve forgotten, he reminded me about. We still may [do a joint book.] We didn’t fall out, we had girl problems. Not like that [between us], but in our lives. We had women in our lives. We never did that [the same girls.] The good news it, we never even liked the same girls. I’m really happy about that. But we were influenced by the women in our lives. I felt like the side piece. [Laughs.]