Former Roc-A-Fella Engineer Reportedly Uses Extortion To Give Back Vintage Jay Z Master Recordings
In the late ’90s and early 2000s, Chauncey Mahan was a name Heads would certainly find in the insert booklets of their albums. A recording engineer, Mahan was by no means a household name, even to level of an Eddie Sancho, Young Guru, or DURO, but he worked on Jay Z hits like “Girls, Girls, Girls,” “Guilty Until Proven Innocent,” and “I Just Wanna Love You.” Additionally, Chauncey got work in with 112, Terror Squad, and Beanie Sigel.
With the changing times, and presumably with the increased involvement of Young Guru, Mahan is believed to have parted ways with Roc-A-Fella Records and Jay Z in the early 2000s. However, TMZ now reports that Chauncey did not go quietly. Per an exclusive report, Mahan claimed responsibility to a series of lost/stolen master recordings from the era in which he worked with the Roc. These reels are said to have been of Jay Z tracks, at a time, when Jay made Roc La Familia, The Blueprint, and others. Well, Mahan (who adamantly denies the ensuing allegations) reportedly stepped to Live Nation, one of Jay’s partners in Roc Nation. Mahan sought a reported $100,000 to liberate the possessions from a storage unit outside of Los Angeles. Per reports, Live Nation agreed (on a negotiated $75,000), only they sent the local police to receive the award, sans cash. Chauncey Manah was cuffed, and recorded, in the books of a local police station for extortion.
Mahan is now claiming that reports are false. He has stated, per HipHopDX, that he tried to return the recordings previously, and was asked by Roc-A-Fella’s parent label, Def Jam Records, to retain storage. The engineer claims that his compensation was intended to cover storage costs during the decade-plus period.
Just Blaze, who worked extensively with Mahan during the Roc period, blasted his former colleague on Twitter on April 21. Just has since deleted the tweets.
Master recordings are typically final, polished versions that go out to CD, vinyl and digital manufacturers and distribution. So in addition to “Who is at fault?,” this report begs the question, “What’s on those tapes?”
What do you think? Do you ever see Jay Z formally releasing his archival materials? He did, after all, spotlight rarity “Show You How” and “This Life Forever” in his book…