The debate as to whether Drake‘s If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late would be a mixtape or an official album went on only weeks before the surprise release.
If you’ve been bothered by the constantly blurred definitions of mixtapes and albums over the last few years you’re not alone. In a new interview with HipHopDX, DatPiff boss Kyle “KP” Reilly revealed the site was originally going to release If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late as a free mixtape and part of DJ Drama’s Gangsta Grillz series.
Reilly explains that Cash Money eventually struck a deal with Drake in which the album would be released for retail and count towards his contractual album requirement – which may mean the Toronto rapper has fulfilled his obligation to Cash Money, and is free to up and leave, perhaps taking Lil Wayne and Nicki Minaj with him. Read the full statement from Reilly:
“Originally we were in talks to release it for free…and have DJ Drama host and even make it an official Gangsta Grillz…however the label was not in favor of that and they struck an agreement to release the project the retail route and it would count towards one of his albums. It was a mutual decision since he wanted to give it away. They [the label] said, ‘Hell no,’ not in those words, so they ‘agreed’ to do it this way as a middle ground and it would count towards his Cash Money deal album total. The label had zero input or creative control over [the album].”
Who really gets to decide these things though? Drake called IYRTITL a “tape” in his handwritten note upon its release. And what ever happened to Views From the 6? Most importantly, it sounds like a mixtape, regardless of the contractual definition placed on it.
Still, the dichotomy here is nothing compared to the conflicted state of the actual music present on If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late – for more on that read our review.