Talk about turning lemons into lemonade… once a convict, Meek Mill has used what many considered unfair incarceration and house arrest to become a bit of a celebrity. With big time sports and music executives coming to his aid, he’s once again a hip-hop star with music on the charts. And now he and Jay Z are partnering to bring Meek’s Dream Chasers label into the Roc Nation fold, reports Variety.
The two signed papers Tuesday in New York City in front of a small media gathering at Roc Nation’s midtown headquarters. Holding the title of president of Dream Chasers, a joint venture with Roc Nation, Meek will oversee the label and build a staff to sign and develop artists. The label will also handle its own operations, creative strategy, marketing and business affairs. Meek is also planning to open a recording studio for use by the label’s artists.
Jay-Z’s 11-year-old Roc Nation has had Meek as a management client: “Everything he has done leading up to this point shows he is ready to [lead] the next generation. We look at the big picture — this is way beyond signing artists and having hot records,” he said.
Meek will continue to record for Maybach/Atlantic and he plans to release some “new content” prior to the Aug. 28 start of his Legendary Nights tour with Future. A Philadelphian — the Eagles used his “Dreams and Nightmares” as their entrance music during their Super Bowl-winning season — Meek created the Dream Chasers imprint in 2012, though its handful of releases have been limited to mix tapes.
Noting that it’s given him “seven years of experience,” Meek added, “I think it’s time for me to dive into the business. I’m 32 years old, I’m in a nice spot in the music business and I can help artists.” The label has no artists signed yet and no time frame to get started. He’s jumping into the label business after having a string of major success — three of his four Maybach/Atlantic albums have gone platinum and two have gone to No. 1.
His 2018 track with Drake, “Going Bad,” peaked at No. 6 this year and is two times platinum. His goal is to sign artists with staying power rather than ones who might enjoy a month of success via social media channels. Jay-Z noted that Meek has been forwarding him plenty of music: “He has a super keen eye.”
Meek Mill’s rise in the music world, though, has run concurrent with lingering legal issues stemming from drug and gun possession charges. Upon his most recent release from incarceration, he and Jay-Z created the REFORM Alliance to lobby for changes in laws and policies concerning parole and probation.
“Coming out of prison, I felt I had a responsibility to lead the culture as much as I can,” Meek said. “Jay-Z and others that came before me were like the snow plow that made it easier for me and others. I want to be the snow plow of the next generation, taking on those responsibilities, trying to move forward and push the culture forward.”