Priority Records is re-launching, beginning with Just Blaze and Baauer's "Higher" featuring Jay Z.
With help from the internet there's been a surge of rappers popping up, so it's a great time for labels to form, or re-form, as the case may be. Priority Records, one of the pioneer labels for gangster rap, has announced it will re-launch, with help from Capitol Music Group and Insurgency Music.
In its heyday the imprint had rap legends like N.W.A., Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Ice Cube and Eazy E on their roster. Although the label's focus was on gangster rap in the past, they are now looking to sign producers and they are focusing on electronic music and progressive urban music, both genres happen to be trending.
Billboard reports that Priority Records will formally launch of August 13th, with the release of Just Blaze and Baauer's collaborative record "Higher" featuring Jay Z. The newly named president of Priority is Insurgency Music founder, Michael Cohen. Cohen revealed that Harry Fraud and his Surf School have already signed with Priority.
Capital Music's chairman/CEO Steve Barnett spoke on the re-launch, "We’re so respectful of Priority’s important role in Capitol’s history. But it was also a street label focusing on music that thrives outside the mainstream. And that’s exactly what Michael and his team have been doing. They have a strong vision of the new generation of electronic and progressive urban music. Baauer was the first indication of that.”
Cohen also spoke on Priority Records, "I don’t come from the hip-hop world. But the genesis of that label was really about supporting the indie level; it broke the mold in terms of working outside the system to bring street-level music to the mainstream without any compromise. And the producer—who has always played a strong role in hip-hop—has become the focal point coming out of the global electronic music space. It’s heralded a paradigm shift in the way music is created, discovered and spread. Our first single ‘Higher’ epitomizes everything we’re trying to do with Priority."
[UPDATE: Harry Fraud Clarifies Label Situation]
Yesterday, as we reported, it was announced that Priority Records would re-launch in August, and that the label had already added Harry Fraud and his Surf School to their roster. The producer has since taken to Twitter to fully explain his label situation.
He says this partnership is for Surf School Recordings, allowing it to have major distribution but remain an independent label. He says as far as himself as an artist/producer he says he does not actually have a record deal.
"The deal that was announced today is for #SurfSchoolRecordings as a LABEL...it is NOT an artist deal OR production deal," he clarified.
"For the label I am looking to create partnerships with other independent minded artists and release wavy music. Its not about signing people," Fraud tweeted. He continued, "SurfSchoolRecordings is an independent label that has secured major distribution...do you know what that means? It means we are dangerous!"
The producer added, "As far as me as an artist/producer I do not have a record deal...yet (evil laugh)."