Despite her label’s alleged attempts to prevent her from releasing new music, TMZ reports that Megan Thee Stallion is now free to drop new tracks this very week after a Texas judge filed a temporary restraining order against 1501 Certified Entertainment. The ruling was a response to the lawsuit the Texas-born rapper filed against the label and its CEO, Carl Crawford, on Monday.
As you might recall from this weekend, Megan was recently seeking to renegotiate her contract with 1501, which the rapper claims in the new suit currently pays her 40 percent of the income from her recordings, versus the 60 percent that goes to 1501. The cost of engineers, mixers, and features allegedly comes out of Megan’s pocket, too. The suit also claims the entirety of the rapper’s touring and performing earnings are paid to the label. As Megan explained on Instagram Live this weekend, “When I signed, I didn’t really know what was in my contract.”
Additionally, Megan calls out Rap-a-Lot Records founder James “J.” Prince in the suit for his attempts to allegedly frighten music-industry figures on Crawford’s behalf, citing a situation in which Crawford allegedly demanded a producer give him beats, lest the Houston-based CEO become angry. “Prince is notorious in the industry for strong-armed intimidation tactics, and the comment was taken as a physical threat of harm,” the suit claims. Prince is not, however, being sued as part of the claim.
“We are very happy the Court granted our TRO and thrilled that the world should be able to now hear Megan’s new music on March 6,” Thee Stallion’s lawyer Richard Busch told TMZ Monday. “We will now proceed with the other claims set forth in the [lawsuit].” And in case you suspect it might not be true, we’ve got the news straight from the horse’s mouth. The rapper tweeted, “NEW MUSIC WILL BE DROPPING.”
Update, March 3: Carl Crawford, the owner of 1501, has responded to Megan’s lawsuit in a new interview with Billboard denying her accusations that he barred her from releasing new music. “”It’s a whole lie,” he says. “Me being greedy and taking money from her, that’s crazy. I never tried to take nothing from her. The only thing we ever did was give, give, give.” He claims that after Megan signed a management deal with Jay-Z’s Roc Nation in September, she ceased communication with 1501 and “opted not to pay him or 1501 any of the money she owed” them since August. He also defends the terms of her initial contract, saying it wasn’t out of the norm for a new artist and argues Jay-Z would’ve offered a similar deal. “Let’s talk about your contract. It’s a great contract for a first-timer,” he says. “What contract gives parts of their masters and 40 perent royalties and all that kind of stuff? Ask Jay-Z to pull one of his artists’ first contracts, and let’s compare it to what Megan got … I guarantee they won’t ever show you that.”
Asked about Megan’s claims in her Instagram Live that a producer associated with 1501 threatened her with physical harm, he says, “I don’t know what producer could be threatening her. She just lies so much.” He goes on to call her a “fraud” and that he’s “here to fight this.”
Update, March 4: Megan Thee Stallion has responded to Crawford’s harsh words with swift action, announcing that her debut album, Suga, will drop on Friday, March 6, as planned and permitted by her temporary restraining order. However, Crawford has filed an emergency motion to dissolve the restraining order, which would block her album’s release, but a judge has yet to rule on it. Meanwhile, she’s shared the album’s cover — which demands that you better read her lips — and its nine-song tracklist, featuring Kehlani and Gunna and including recent single “B.I.T.C.H.” As for the ongoing legal situation, a source tells Complex that her team intends to release the album and “deal with this situation as it unfolds.” May Hot Girl Spring commence!
Update, March 5: TMZ reports that a judge has denied Crawford’s motion to dissolve Megan’s restraining order against 1501, meaning she has the full go-ahead to drop Suga on Friday without any further disturbance. Congrats to Megan and all of us!