Grammy Award-nominated recording artist Latto’s career has drastically improved since her reality TV debut. Many fans of the “Put It On Da Floor” rapper aren’t even aware of her time on The Rap Game. However, the show’s co-producer and host, Jermaine Dupri, hasn’t.
During a recent interview with HipHopDX, the music mogul addressed the public’s thoughts on how he handled Latto’s career after she won the show’s game prize.
“People keep saying, ‘Jermaine, you dropped the ball on [Latto]. But what I think people don’t understand is, I put Latto’s record out,” said Dupri, referring to the deal promised to Latto for winning the season.
Viewers were under the impression that the winning contestant would be granted an exclusive recording contract with Dupri’s legacy label, So So Def. Dupri said that was indeed not the case. “The deal was, if you win on The Rap Game, you get a single from Jermaine Dupri on So So Def,” said Dupri. T”hat single [Who is You] came out.”
He added, “The problem was that Latto was 16 years old, and the outlets didn’t support it. And nobody was like speaking on it. Nobody talked about it. If you watched the TV show, you saw it…But people didn’t really start talking about Latto until she started making more vulgar records, dressing more sexual, and being more adult.”
Latto’s recollection of the event differs from Dupri’s account. In 2016, she told VladTV that she was offered a deal with Dupri’s label but ultimately turned down the contract because, “It wasn’t enough money.”
Latto has gone on to achieve great success while Dupri has continued to add to his legacy with an upcoming Verzuz battle slated for September. There doesn’t seem to be a loser in this scenario.