In an interview from his prison cell for his new podcast, “Collect Call With Suge Knight,” the former Death Row Records CEO, Suge Knight, made a surprising revelation that NFL legend Deion Sanders was briefly signed to his label during the 1990s when the iconic record label was at the peak of its influence.
During the interview, Knight shared that Deion Sanders, known as “Prime,” expressed an interest in pursuing a rap career. As a result, Knight invested over half a million dollars from his personal finances, facilitating studio time and collaborating with renowned producer Dallas Austin. Multiple songs were recorded, and all seemed set for Sanders to embark on his rap journey. However, Knight’s efforts took an unexpected turn. According to Knight, Sanders eventually approached him with a request to transfer his contract to Interscope, as Death Row was a Black-owned label, and Sanders had a deal with Nike that he felt conflicted with his involvement in a Black-owned company.
Disappointed but respecting Sanders’ decision, Knight handed over the contract to music industry magnate Jimmy Iovine. He asserts that he remained involved in shaping Sanders’ artistic image and marketability. However, Knight claims that he never received financial compensation for the significant investment and effort he devoted to Sanders’ music career. This revelation provides a glimpse into the complex business and personal relationships that characterized the music industry during Death Row Records’ heyday.
While Knight may no longer be actively involved in the music industry due to his incarceration, he continues to observe and comment on its dynamics, as demonstrated by his new podcast, “Collect Call With Suge Knight.” In a recent episode, Knight recognized the influential role of women in today’s music landscape. He praised artists such as Cardi B, SZA, Doja Cat, Summer Walker, and Lizzo for their achievements. Knight highlighted the industry’s transformation, with contemporary female artists leading the way and achieving both musical and visual success.
He commended Cardi B for her prominent status and business acumen. Knight also lauded Doja Cat for her versatility and ability to excel in various aspects of the entertainment industry. Among R&B artists, he mentioned Summer Walker, SZA, and Lizzo for their impressive contributions.
According to Knight, the new generation of female artists not only showcases musical talent but also possesses striking beauty. He contrasted them with earlier female artists in the industry and acknowledged the remarkable evolution in the appearance and confidence of today’s female performers. Suge Knight may be behind bars, but his perspective on the industry offers a unique insight into the changing landscape of music and entertainment.
Derek Chan – Editor