Earlier this week, a music insider told Complex that Lil Uzi Vert is set to retain Roc Nation management, who will help him in his struggle with DJ Drama and Don Cannon’s Generation Now records. Today, he was added to the site’s roster, which seems to confirm the move. Uzi has been entangled in a cold war with Drama, who signed him as an underground sensation in 2015, for over a year. He’s repeatedly called out Generation Now and their parent company Atlantic Records for not releasing his music, outright advising artists to never “sign to a rapper or a DJ” last year and saying he was “done with music” earlier this year. Uzi has recently said that his upcoming Eternal Atake album, the follow-up to 2017’s platinum-selling Luv Is Rage 2, is ready but his labels won’t let him drop it.
After the latest social media volleying between Uzi and Drama, which included Drama saying Uzi was free to release the album and Uzi mentioning “hanging with the boss’ girlfriend,” it looks like the two are on the verge of finally splitting — and Uzi is on his way to the house that Jigga built. Roc Nation has a record label, which houses acts like J. Cole, Rihanna, and Big Sean, and they also have a management wing where they serve acts like Meek Mill and Fat Joe. For now, Uzi would be managed by Roc Nation.
The move would be the latest example of Roc Nation’s altruistic praxis to help artists in a tough bind. Aside from donating to various grassroots movements, Jay-Z quietly helped Lil Wayne pay his back taxes, while Roc Nation provided legal assistance for Meek Mill and 21 Savage, who have respective probation and immigration battles they’re currently fighting.
Uzi’s predicament isn’t as dire — though he’s started a #freeuzi movement on social media — but his music career has been on lock down for over year. While stylistic peers like Juice WRLD, Lil Yachty, Post Malone and others are releasing music to much fanfare, the 25-year-old Uzi has been sitting frustrated on the sidelines. It’s worth noting that Uzi had to upload his “XO Tour Llife” smash to Soundcloud himself. Who knows where he would be without taking his career into his own hands. Now he’s set to do that on a grander scale, joining a Roc Nation movement that’s devoted to giving artists creative freedom.