The battle between Megan Thee Stallion and her label, Carl Crawford’s 1501 Certified Entertainment, had simmered down over the past two years after a judge granted the rapper an order allowing her to release music again, but today, hostilities flared up again as Megan sued the label over the classification of her most recent project. Complex reports Megan is upset that Something For Thee Hotties wasn’t counted as an “album” according to the terms of her contract, despite being 21 tracks and over 45 minutes long.
The point of contention here is that Meg’s contract with 1501 is for four albums and that despite releasing Tina Snow, Fever, Suga, Good News, and Something For Thee Hotties in the four-odd years since she signed the contract, only Good News was counted against that total. Obviously, she wants out of her original contract, and her popularity is such that she may never actually need to sign another one. But having her under contract is (ostensibly) a good thing for 1501, which gets a percentage of all her royalties, whether they come from “albums” or “mixtapes.”
Unfortunately, 1501 is operating from a well-established playbook — it’s actually common practice for labels to count projects as mixtapes to keep artists under contract for longer, a problematic legacy of hip-hop’s penchant for putting out unauthorized, unofficial, or surprise releases. However, by the strictest terms, anything 45 minutes or more should technically count as an album as they’ve been defined for the past 80 years or so (EPs are 22 minutes, leaving a lot of wiggle room between the two designations). That’s Meg’s argument here; her lawyers write in the suit, ” There are no other parameters or requirements under the contract for what can be deemed an ‘Album’ other than total run time of the album. As such, Something for Thee Hotties satisfies her ‘Minimum Recording Commitment’ for the second option period of the agreement.”
Incidentally, Megan showed her teeth earlier today after Crawford posted a headline boasting of a victory in their previously existing case; however, it seemed he had misunderstood which of the cases against him she’d dropped. The suit regarding fair royalty splits is still ongoing and now, Megan’s added another one to the collection in the hopes of no longer dealing with Crawford again.