In Kevin Gate’s second part interview, the young rapper discusses how guerilla style, self-promotion boosted his popularity and helped leverage one of his greatest deals to date. Not one to be handheld by a record company, Gates took a cue from Birdman and started his own label, Bread Winners Association (BWA). The wildly successful label caught the attention of several mainstream music publications including The Washington Post & The Rolling Stone, and made Gates a millionaire before signing any outside deals.
On Young Money rumors:
I was in the process of signing with Young Money, but after being around Birdman and him telling me that ‘man I been doing this for twenty years’ and things of that nature, you know he inspired me to start my own label. Now they managed me, Wayne’s brother is my manager, so I was like the first artist to be managed by Young Money.
Why he Choose Atlantic Records:
As far as me I started my own label called BWA, Bread Winners Association, my partner and I and, we took leads with everybody, Universal and everybody, Atlantic got a hold of it and was like ‘look we like artists that have their own brand, we like artists who know who they are’ so we partner with Atlantic Records because we wanted to learn the inner workings and mechanics of a label because us having our own label, why not learn how to run a successful label, from a successful label. So I look at it like I’m in college right now. I’m just learning, and I’m just going to keep learning.
How he Achieved Success:
I never relied on a label to do anything for me, I grind hard in the streets. We was already doing money- I was already a millionaire when I went over the deal with Young Money, I was already a millionaire when I came to Atlantic, just off shows…
And my partner, she was the DJ, she would go in there with the cd with the songs on it, and tell the DJ what songs to play… I was the rapper and the security guard, that was my job, and that’s what we started at. Then we opened up a business account and got an LLC and I was like man, we got 2.5m’s… off a shows and grindin’ in the streets real hard. It’s an untapped market and because I established myself like that it was nothing that anyone could ever take away from me, because I already laid the groundwork.
Produced By Emazin Smith