Dame Dash Lets Sway Ask Him Anything & The Tables Seem To Turn (Video)
Whether he’s running Roc-A-Fella Records, producing films, or pursuing fashion, publishing, and independent record labels like DD172 and BluRoc, Damon Dash is entertaining. One part Martin Scorsese character, one part Nikki Barnes, Dame’s fast-talking, street-informed style has absolutely changed the face of the Hip-Hop culture over the last 20 years. Regardless of what anyone says, the Uptown entrepreneur came up, in a major way.
While he’s been on a recent media run of releasing an episode of his new film, Loisaidas, featuring some credits and support from Kanye West, Dame stopped through Sway In The Morning. Sway Calloway and Dame Dash have extensive history, which matters in this hour-plus segment, but like many fast-paced creatives, they apparently haven’t talked in a while.
Late for the interview, Dame brings cupcakes and his female partners Bianca Tran and Raquelle Horn, along with Smoke DZA, and even a Boston terrier. The music/film executive promptly tells his Wake Up Show friend that nothing is off the table, and throughout the next 75 minutes, Sway seizes the opportunity.
Here’s a rundown:
(23:00) Dame Dash talks Loisaidas, and his unique subscription model that offers fans the content (beginning today, March 4) for a mere $5 Paypal. Sway presses Dame about Kanye’s involvement, and gets to the nitty gritty of how exactly Dame reminded his former star Roc signing that the tables have turned, and to pay it back.
As the case for many of the interview moments, things get a little tense. Asked about their speaking terms prior to a recent BET Award presentation, Dame gets frustrated. Additionally, contrary to Kanye’s Breakfast Club comments, Dash says he “dropped” Kanye, presumably referring to the division of talent in the Roc-A-Fella Records split. Along the way, Dame tries to work in Smoke DZA’s story, but Sway presses on.
(30:00) Speaking of begrudged former associates, Sway then moves into Jim Jones. Dame is evasive on why he and The Diplomats’ Capo split, claiming that if it was regarding money, it was too small an amount to warrant the split. Dame also stresses that he’s upset with how Jim aired him out in public, and that it’s not the way “generals” (see “capo/captain”) ought to be treated. Dame does state that he maintains good relations with many of Jim’s blood family members, in addition to Cam’ron.
(39:00) Just over the interview’s halfway mark, things get really, really odd. Referring to the recent BET appearance, Sway asks Dame about his missing tooth (as seen in photos). Dame explains it was for an acting role in one of his films. The discussion grows, from Dame explaining that he’s constantly growing, changing, and never trying to do the same thing. As an illustration, the former Original Flavor manager uses Sway’s hat. Whether or not the “snapping” (as Dame historically calls it) cuts deep is unknown. Sway certainly appears bothered—whether it’s the length spent on discussing clothes, the constant interruptions and stern tones Damon takes, or possibly if the illustration is a brush-back to some of the penetrating follow-up questions regarding Kanye and Jimmy. In any event, for awkward moments captured on video, this is not only grabbing, it recurs throughout the duration of the interview—with mentions of Sean John/Diddy, and more.
(46:00) If Dame’s snapping on Sway’s hat, shirt, and overall look was in fact a brush-back, the MTV News honcho did not waver. He next moved into Beanie Sigel. Those questions apparently upset Dame further. As Sway pushed on about royalty statements and pay-outs, Dame turns the tables on Sway. Knowing that Calloway has been a music industry executive (see: Saigon’s The Greatest Story Never Told credits), he pushes the questions back on the host. As expected, things get a little bit scrambled.
(54:00) The coup de grace though is the inevitable Jay Z question. Sway leads with the positive fact that the Roc boys (now men) have again been spotted together, by camera lenses. Dame tells Sway that he read a report of Jay surrounding himself with presumed police and federal informants that greatly concerned him. Although he does not say it specifically, Dash paints the corners of his own suspicions, pointing to the fact that their other partner, Kareem “Biggs” Burke is incarcerated (“for weed”) as Dash says. He then points to charges brought on close Roc associate Irv Gotti, as well as heat he’s personally felt. Dash demands that he meets Jay face-to-face before he considers doing business with him.
Worked up, Dame then again turns the questions on Sway. Dame demands to know why Sway (and others) don’t ask Jay the same questions. He brings in Heather B for support, which prompts some awkwardness and apparent discomfort from both sides. Dame stresses that he’s sick of talking about Jay, Beans, and Jim until they have to speak about him. With Kanye talking, does Dash have a point?
The interview’s final 10 minutes come back to the present, where cool Heads prevail.
Is this the badge of a good, heated interview, or were buttons wrongfully pushed on either side?