Kurupt appeared with Suge Knight on Hot 97 in New York late last week to announce that he has returned to Death Row Records. The duo stopped in briefly at the end of Angie Martinez’s show and promised to return Monday with full details. “Kurupt is back on Death Row,” Martinez exclaimed, almost in disbelief. “Ain’t that huge?” Kurupt replied. The signing is interesting not only because of their personal issues, but also their legal history.
Kurupt & Suge Knight on Hot 97: Listen Here
In December 2000, a Los Angeles jury awarded $4.3 million to Lamont and Ken Brumfield, the former managers of Kurupt, agreeing that Knight interfered with their contractual and economic relationships with Kurupt when Knight signed him to Death Row the first time. Kurupt originally was signed by Lamont Brumfield’s Rapp Central Productions and Ken Brumfield’s Hoodsta-4-Life Publishing, but proceeded to sign recording, publishing and management contracts with Death Row. Kurupt declared bankruptcy in 1996, which voided all of the contracts in question and allowed him to sign with Antra. Perhaps another lawsuit — or Kurupt bankruptcy — is coming in the near future.
An announcement on Tha Row’s web site recently stated, “That’s right, Kurupt is the newest member of Tha Row family! The contract is signed and he’s once again with the real n—– in the game! Look for his new album coming later this year! Tha Row 2002, the new era has begun!”
Kurupt’s current label, Antra Records, quickly shot down the rumor, and it had looked as if it was going to be the second time in a week that Tha Row has claimed to sign someone, only to have it denied by the artist’s current label. Arista also disputed reports that Left Eye had signed with Tha Row. However, Left Eye has added credibility to the announcement that she will record an album for Knight under the alias N.I.N.A. with posts that she’s made on her own web site. And remember, Def Jam said the same thing about Erick Sermon when he went to Dreamworks as Erick Onasis, and Elektra denied that Busta Rhymes was moving to J Records, which is where both he and Sermon eventually ended up.