KiD CuDi's WZRD Debuts At No. 3 Despite Being Swept Under The Rug By Universal

from the the-fans-have-spoken dept

Last week we wrote about WZRD, the new album from KiD CuDi on which he went in an entirely different direction from his usual style. That's the kind of thing that makes big record labels nervous (they'd prefer artists just keep churning out variations on their first success) and CuDi's label Universal Republic was no exception. After the release, CuDi took to Twitter to vent:

Ok so just a heads up, my weak ass label only shipped 55k physicals cuz they treated this like some indie side project tax right off. So i apologize on behalf of my weak ass major label. And I apologize for the lack of promo, again, my weak ass major label. They tried to rush me thru this so i can just give em another MOTM, but guess what? Fuck that, next album is WZRD. MOTM3 on hold til 2014. who mad??? not me and @DotDaGenius. So its def gonna be tough to find one in the stores guys, I'm sorry about that.

Apparently fans were prepared to make the effort, because WZRD debuted at #3 on the Billboard 200 albums chart. This is especially funny in the wake of RIAA CEO Cary Sherman's recent interview, in which he claimed record labels were needed to "separate the wheat from the chaff" and "designate who is worth promoting and marketing". It seems the legacy gatekeepers aren't quite as good at curation as they think—at least I bet Universal is wishing they'd gotten a few more copies of WZRD out there, and put some promotional weight behind the project. Maybe, if they'd put a little faith in their own artist, they could have had a #1 on their hands.

Filed Under: kid cudi, labels, music, promotion, wzrd
Companies: universal music, universal republic


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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 8 Mar 2012 @ 3:14am

    "They shipped 55k physicals and he sold 66k. I'm not sure how many of that 66k were physicals, but it seems like the label was actually in the ballpark on sales forecast."

    How can you say the label was in the ballpark, when we don't know what the split between physical and digital sales were, perhaps the cd sold out and digital just make up the extra.
    If the physicals sold out or came close to it then are we really supposed to congratulate the label, is that what they are supposed to do; just ship enough physicals for a week's worth of sales?

    I've been looking for a breakdown myself of how digital compared to physical sales and was similarly surprised that physicals should matter at all now.

    I imagine that digital sales go more towards selections of tracks than albums but it does seem that it is really important to know the split in digital vs physical sales to make much sense of this disagreement.

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