Rumors are running across the music grapevine of another industry shakeup – this time of a rift between Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo of The Neptunes and their current label, Arista Records.
Reports have surfaced that, late Saturday night, The Neptunes left messages for their staff proclaiming “we are leaving Arista.” According to sources, the announcement was totally unexpected and no additional information was given at the time.
The apparent breakup is believed to be industry politics and linked to the overall shakeup at Arista Records after the abrupt departure of LA Reid. Reid departed Arista just two weeks ago to takeover the helm at Def Jam Records. The Neptunes worked under Reid on their label, Star Trak, which put out hits from The Clipse and Rosco P. Coldchain among others.
Currently, the super-producers are in closed-door meeting with staff, lawyers and label representatives all week to determine the fate of the Star Trak/Arista relationship. No word yet on the future of Star Trak artists like The Clipse whose spring 2004 album release is now uncertainly caught up in label drama.
More information on this story will be published as it develops.