Why Russ Won’t Sell His Catalog, Even For $100 Million [WAAMN Chapter 3.8]
For this tip-top independent rapper, it’s all about mailbox money—creators, take note.
This is your weekly installment of my new book, We Are All Musicians Now. To make sure you don’t miss future serializations, subscribe here. Below you’ll find Chapter 3: Rise of the Superfan (Part 7). Enjoy!
Russell “Russ” Vitale is one of the most successful independent hip-hop acts on the planet. Since the beginning of his career a decade ago, he’s made a point of writing, rapping, singing, producing, mixing and mastering his material by himself—all while maintaining control of his copyrights.
So it’s particularly fascinating to speak with him a week before Christmas, just a few days after Bruce Springsteen sold his music and publishing for over half a billion dollars.
“When it’s all said and done, I want to have over a hundred albums that I own,” begins Russ, 29. “To swap it for a job, which is like, ‘I'll give you all my masters, my mailbox money’ … why would you give up passive income?”