Kevin Gates reveals that Apple told him his album, "Islah," outsold Rihanna's "Anti."
Yesterday, Kevin Gates stopped by DC radio show The Fam in the Morning. Gates began the interview addressing recent statements that some took to be controversial, as, during a radio interview last month, he seemed to point blame on the victim in incidents of police brutality and voiced his support for the sentiment "All Lives Matter," instead of the movement that focuses just on "Black Lives." Amid defending his comments, which he ties in to his wider spiritual beliefs, he revealed that his recent album, Islah, outsold Rihanna's Anti. At least that's what certain Apple employees told him during a visit to one of the company's offices.
In mentioning his album sales, Gates is adamant that he couldn't care less about where his album made its chart debut. "The album is, what, No. 2?" asked Gates' rhetorically, referring to Islah's Billboard debut for the week ending Feb. 4. "When I went to Apple they was like, 'No, it's really No. 1.'"
Rihanna's Anti was leaked on TIDAL on January 27, and she soon decided to give away 1,000,000 free downloads of the album. It became available on other online music stores on January 29, the same release date as Gates' Islah. The same day, Anti was certified platinum by the RIAA, but it was soon reported that Samsung preemptively purchased 1,000,000 copies of Anti, hence all the free giveaways upon the album's release.
"No, but Kevin, Samsung paid for Rihanna's CDs, and that's not fair," Gates continued, relaying the words of a female Apple employee.
Due to its early release, Rihanna's chart debut came a week before Kevin's, though Anti's first placement was shockingly modest: No. 27. However, the initial chart only accounted for less than half a week of sales and did not include any of the free album downloads. The next week, Anti racked in over 172,000 units and rose to No. 1, one spot ahead of Gates' Islah, which moved approximately 112,000 units.
There has not been any information suggesting Nielsen included Samsung's pre-bought albums in Anti's second-week sales, though it remains confusing how exactly Billboard configured its streaming numbers. And, of course, Apple is a competitor of Samsung's, but regardless if its No. 1 or No. 2, the numbers for Gates' debut album are outstanding. Though he doesn't seem to be particularly impressed:
"I said, 'Ma'am, I wouldn't care if mine was in the 100th place."
Watch his full interview with The Fam in the Morning below.