Last week, Drake dropped If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late as a surprise release for sale on iTunes, following months of rumors that he had a mixtape in the works.
In a new interview with HipHopDX, DatPiff founder Kyle “KP” Reilly revealed that If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late was originally planned as a free release on his mixtape site. Instead, Drake’s label, Cash Money, pushed for it to be released through retail. It was supposed to be hosted by DJ Drama as part of his Gangsta Grillz series.
“Originally we were in talks to release it for free,” Reilly said. “However the label was not in favor of that and they struck an agreement to release the project the retail route and it would count towards one of his albums.”
He added, “It was a mutual decision since he wanted to give it away. [The label] said, ‘Hell no,’ not in those words, so they ‘agreed’ to do it this way as a middle ground and it would count towards his Cash Money deal album total.”
The decision paid off, as If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 this week, selling 495,000 copies.
Drake’s mentor Lil Wayne is currently involved in a lawsuit seeking $51 million and contractual freedom from Cash Money.
Watch Drake’s new short film, Jungle: