Berlin, Germany – Pusha T evidently isn’t a fan of artists overloading their albums with songs to game the streaming system. During a conversation with journalist Anupa Mistry at the 2018 Red Bull Music Festival in Berlin, the G.O.O.D. Music president revealed his disdain for the tactic while explaining how Kanye West convinced him to make DAYTONA a seven-track album.
“What really sold me, because [Kanye] knows I’m so anti the idea of everybody putting like 25 tracks on an album to get the streams up and all of that,” he said around the 49-minute mark. “It’s such a poverty way of cheating to me. I’m not into it. So I was like, ‘You know what, you’re right. We need to be totally against everything, and we need to just have a whole other mantra in regard to what we’re doing in this wave.”
Pusha’s criticism could be seen as another jab at his rival Drake, whose latest album Scorpion includes 25 songs. Drizzy has previously generated massive streaming numbers with his 20-track album Views and his 22-song playlist More Life.
Although the rules have changed over time, Billboard currently counts 1,250 subscription streams as one album unit sold and 3,750 ad-supported audio streams as one album unit sold.
The Recording Industry Association of America calculates 1,500 on-demand audio and/or video streams as one album sold for certification purposes.
Under these standards, artists have an incentive to pack projects with lots of songs to generate additional streams. Doing so provides more opportunities to move equivalent units, allowing them to ascend the Billboard charts and obtain gold or platinum certifications.
Watch the entire conversation with Pusha T up top for recollections of his early rap days, thoughts on his controversial DAYTONA cover art and much more.