According to a Billboard story, the million-dollar relaunch of Mass Appeal isn’t going to end with the magazine. Nas and his business partner, 36-year-old Peter Bittenbender, have decided to shift the music side of the latter’s Decon imprint to a new label called Mass Appeal Records. (The company’s studio work for major clients like Nike, CNN and Rockstar Games will continue to operate under the Decon name.)
That means that Nas will go the independent route once his Def Jam contract is up later this year, beginning with a collection of unreleased music called Lost Tapes 2. Also on deck in the initial Mass Appeal rollout is a compilation featuring A$AP Mob, Future, Pusha T, Mac Miller and Nas himself (covering the Gang Starr classic “Mass Appeal,” of course), and a posthumous Pimp C LP rounded out by A-list beats from Juicy J, Mike Will Made It and DJ Mustard. As for new artists, Boldy James, Bishop Nehru and former XXL Freshman Fashawn are all among the label’s initial signings.
“I’m excited to be a part of creating and supporting future careers and legacy artists, promoting love and finding new genius to help the world,” Nas wrote Billboard in an email. “I’m going to be as involved as I need to be, but I also want to be respectful of the art and give artists the space they need to grow and become themselves.”
“We want to become the next XL,” Bittenbender added. “This is an opportunity to take everything we’ve learned and build a global, diversified label from the ground up.”