Roc-A-Fella Records co-founder and Hip Hop entrepreneur Dame Dash offered words of praise for Harlem rapper A$AP Rocky, during a newly-published interview with Complex. He gave credit to the lyricist for being on his “fly shit” and not caring what others think, a trait he attributed to those from Harlem (himself and Cam’ron included).
“I been fuckin with A$AP Rocky a little too…I like these young Harlem niggas cause they on some fly shit,” Dame said. “These niggas like ‘Yo man, we on some Harlem shit.’ I just came back from London and they’re like he be stuntin. So, I like A$AP Rocky. The way he be stuntin and shit…I love what he doing. He do whatever he want to do. He don’t give a fuck. So, I like it. And when I speak to him he says intelligent things. He’s not about doing no negative shit. He’s about really being artistic and pushing the bar. He actually—The things he does is similar to what I would do if I was a rapper at his age. Being an individual and being confident in what you believe in and not giving a fuck about what everybody thinks is complete Harlem…He’s that generation of Harlem. Cam’s that generation. I don’t dress like A$AP Rocky. I don’t dress like Cam. I dress like Dame…All of us are completely different. From completely different generations, but have a complete, strong point of view.”
Dame later revealed that film producer Lee Daniels, who most recently directed the film The Butler, owes him $2 million for a film he funded years ago. He said that in addition to not receiving his money from Daniels, he wasn’t allowed to have any say in how the film was promoted because they felt he would take the attention away from Daniels.
“I was funding my own movies,” he said. “So, I funded The Woodsman for Lee Daniels. He really asked me to do him a favor and take the two million from The Woodsman. And I got what I needed out of it. I got the perception. I brought Kanye. Went to Sundance. Did everything I wanted to do…The money was coming back and he asked me to do him a favor and help him do his movie to showcase him directing. And I was like—The script was crazy to me. And I was like ‘Dawg, this my money for movies. To put in to flip. The same way I empowered you I’m using this to empower other people.’ He swore to God I was gonna get my money back. Like ‘Don’t worry about it. You’ll get your money back next week’ type shit. ‘I promise you.’ This, that, and the third. And the movie ended up costing like $12 million. And I had no say in how it came out. They didn’t want me a part of the perception of the marketing of it…And I ended up never getting my money back.”
Among the projects Dame has recently taken on is working with four different clothing brands, which he says will be introduced at New York Fashion Week and at the Capsule Show in Paris, France.
“I’m launching four brands…So, I’m gonna introduce like four brands [at] Fashion Week in New York,” Dame said. “And I’m gonna show at Capsule in Paris. So, you’ll see all of that and whatever antics I have. But you’ll see the fashion. It’ll be mens. It’ll be bikinis. It’ll be swimming trunks. And then fall, which I’mma show in February is retarded. And I’m very cocky about it. So, I’m getting that Ralph Lauren, you know? That’s who’s my next—That’s the guy in fashion that I probably think whose title I need. We’ll see what happens…I’m trying to make better shit than him. But that’s what I mean. I respect him…If I want to be in the game I gotta put myself against the best. The person I respect the most to the extent that I’m wearing it.”
(August 6, 2014)
UPDATE: Dame Dash is suing Lee Daniels for $25 million.
Dash's lawyer, Natraj Bhushan, recently spoke about this.
“It’s very upsetting because there was a certain point where Lee was up-and-coming and Damon, as a music mogul and producer, really saw potential,” Bhushan said in an interview with The NY Post. “Lee went on to a very successful career and all Damon wants is what he’s rightfully entitled to."
According to the lawsuit, Dash has put money in several Lee Daniels films, including Precious and The Woodsman.
Dash is also reportedly suing Simon Sheffield, a talent manager, for defamation. Dash claims Sheffield has spoken poorly about him to many people in the industry. He is asking for $1 million from Sheffield.