Before they were one of the hottest collectives in the industry, Cash Money was a budding label with rap dreams. Young Bucklinked with the group in his teens, and while he did spend four years under Cash Money's wing, Buck never technically signed a deal with the label. Buck appeared in music videos and believed he would be the next artist on deck, but that never materialized. After Juvenile and Lil Wayne began dropping albums, the label's recognition expanded, yet still, Buck wasn't releasing any music. The rapper recently revealed why he decided to step away from the label after years of waiting in the shadows.
"I was getting lost more and more and more," Young Buck told VladTV. "I think with all the success that was coming with them, and Baby having to stay—and I understand it now. At the time I didn't understand it, just to be honest, but, like you said, they were dropping all of these different albums and Baby was basically chasing the success with the artists that was actually winning. I don't think he was looking to actually take the time to try to get another artist established when he already got a group that's doing so much, and I made my own decision to say, you know what? Lemme just get up out this loop."
Buck explained that he'd "built [his] city around [him] being among Cash Money." He was traveling between New Orleans and his hometown of Memphis and making sure he was "bringing that same aura" to his city. After four years, people began to question Buck because they hadn't heard him on any releases. The rapper recalled people pointing out his appearances in music videos, but there weren't any projects to back up his affiliation with the then-growing brand.
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"I became older, a little more eager for wanting my shot to happen and I left," said Buck. "Came back home and just started to basically, that's where the independence of me as an artist started was once I left from Cash Money. I came back to ground zero and I created a name for myself." Buck said he would spend money to press his own albums and then would sell them for $10 apiece. Because of his previous connection to Cash Money, he already had a buzz in the city and was able to establish himself as an independent artist.
Watch Young Buck detail his separation from Cash Money below.