Lil Pump released his debut album Harverd Dropout in late-February and it featured over-the-top drug lyrics, social media trolling, and more as a part of his astute marketing strategy. Despite Pump’s star-studded tracklist and millions of streams, the album only managed to move 48,000 units in traditional album sales. Recently, No Jumper released their 33-minute interview with Lil Pump, where the Miami-artist discusses rapper look-alikes and his now-voided publishing deal among other things.
“I ain’t gone lie, I seen a lot of rappers that blew up at the same time as me and then I see them now, and I’m like fuck, them niggas fucked up in their deal. And I’m like fuck man, it just sucks. People looking me up. Ya’ll niggas think I’m stupid, but guess what? I’m a free agent after I drop [Harverd Dropout].”
Lil Pump was only 16-years-old when his breakout hit single “Gucci Gang” caught the eye of labels alike. The Florida native originally signed a five-album contract with Warner Bros., however, it was voided after they discovered Pump was underaged at the time and never got certified by the court. Lil Pump’s legal team then renegotiated a more favorable, one-album contract that ended following the release of Harverd Dropout.
“You can’t be fucking with the wrong people, signing deals with no fucking lawyer. That’s what everybody do, sign deals with no lawyer and then go fucking sign their publishing. Don’t ever sign your publishing away, man. That’s the dumbest shit ever.”
Lil Uzi Vert is the most recent rapper to be on the wrong end of a publishing deal. The Philadelphia rapper—signed to DJ Drama’s Generation Now imprint under Atlantic Records—hasn’t released a project in nearly two years. At the top of 2019, Uzi announced his “retirement” from music after multiple delays of his sophomore LP, Eternal Atake.
“It’s a lot of people that want to be like me. It’s a lot of people that wanna look just like this,” Pump points out his face tats and dyed dreads. Lil Pump is one of the more peculiar rappers coming out of South Florida and numerous artists with the same attributes have had similar success.
Major labels refer to this as the “Lil Pump Plan,” a ten-step program that transforms local artists into viral sensations, Vulture reported in 2018. Lil Pump similarly touched this topic on his Harverd Dropout cut “Be Like Me” featuring Lil Wayne.