Close behind household brands Jay-Z, Diddy, and Dr. Dre on the list of hip-hop's wealthiest artists are Cash Money Records’ co-founders Bryan "Birdman" and Ronald "Slim" Williams.
Unlike their better known peers, they didn’t shamelessly shill for a Korean phone company or attempt to create moguls in the classroom. Birdman and Silm found themselves in the upper echelon of wealthiest hip-hop artists the old fashioned way: by making music.
And the brothers’ entrepreneurship has earned them a distinction that their fellow moguls have yet to attain: the 2013 BMI Icon Award.
BMI VP Catherine Brewton in a release:
"Bryan and Ronald Williams’ creative and entrepreneurial acumen has resulted in over 20 years of global success for them personally, and for their enterprise, Cash Money Records."
Clocking in at a net worth of over $200 million combined, Birdman and Slim are pioneers of a different kind. They were the first to take advantage the demographic trend of Americans moving south, which in turn popularized southern hip-hop.
The history of Cash Money tells the story of the last twenty years in hip-hop.
At the turn of the 20th century, in-house acts Juvenile and the Big Tymers moved Cash Money into popular music.
Cash Money dominated the mid-2000s off the back off of Dwayne Michael Carter.
Weezy’s success allowed the label to remain relevant in today’s fragmented music landscape by diversifying its roster. When I say diversify, I mean the label underwent mitosis, randomly signing Kevin Rudolf, Paris Hilton, and Limp Bizkit.
But the days of being a purely a music label are dwindling. Cash Money will be publishing a book by the Reverend Al Sharpton, "The Rejected Stone: Al Sharpton and the Path to American Leadership."
Politics aside, by peeping the Rev’s latest squeeze, there’s a few things we could learn from the man.
Cash Money Records, where dreams come true.
Published under: Hip Hop