Knowing the difference between mixing business and personal relationships is key within the music industry, and for T.I., sacrificing a connection wasn’t worth the risk.
What’s more, he says he turned down the opportunity to sign two of the hottest emcees of the current generation because he knew it would come with a price tag worth far more than money.
According to the “Paper Trail” rapper, the artists in question were Young Thug and 21 Savage — fellow Atlanteans who were looking to sign to his Grand Hustle label.
“At this point in my career, I find it honorable to be able to tell new artists when they come up to me, you know, 21 Savage, [Young] Thug, a lot of them come up to me, ‘Aye man, give me a million, Tip. I don’t care what you do, just give me a million and let me handle it from there,'” T.I. explained during an appearance on Shannon Sharpe’s Club Shay Shay podcast.
Why He Declined
T.I. also said that he wasn’t able to honor the deal on the table.
“Like nah, I ain’t gonna do that, because if I give you a million, I gotta take back something that’s gonna be worth way more, and we ain’t gon’ be able to be friends from there,” he explained. “I always tell ’em, man, ‘Don’t worry about the money up front ’cause it’s gon’ come.’”
It Always Works Out In The End
In the end, it all worked out because T.I. explains that whenever he runs across both 21 Savage and Young Thug’s work, the admiration remains the same.
“I remember telling that to Slime, I remember telling that to 21…every time he sees me now, he’ll hit me and say, ‘Aye, it came,'” said T.I. “And that puts a smile on my face because I just know how impactful every generation has the opportunity to be even more than the last.”