Mannie Fresh & Birdman Will Reunite The Big Tymers 20 Years In To Show They’re Still Fly
Years before Mannie Fresh and Birdman became household names to Rap music fans, they were simply the Big Tymers. Cash Money Records’ co-founder followed in the steps of Puff Daddy, Jermaine Dupri, and Master P when he formed a group with his label’s stalwart producer. Baby and Mannie released five albums between 1997 and 2001, the first meteoric rise of the Cash Money Millionaires. 2002’s Hood Rich would go to #1 on the charts, with “Still Fly” flirting close to Top 10 single status.
However, that pinnacle of success would be short-lived. Mannie Fresh exited the label in the early 2000s, citing financial disputes during renegotiation. Fresh would sign with Def Jam, taking his sound with him. Juvenile, B.G., Turk, Mack 10, TQ, and other label acts soon followed, with Lil Wayne also stating he was considering exiting.
While Wayne would ultimately stay, the Big Tymers gave way to Birdman’s solo career. His highest charting solo LP, 2005’s Fast Money, featured one Mannie production. While the rapper formerly known as Baby partnered with Wayne and Rich Gang on albums, Mannie released two solo LPs—one at Def Jam, and one independently.
Now, the Big Tymers have announced they are planning their proper 20th anniversary reunion show, before the hometown crowd. On Friday, October 27 at The Maison, Mannie and Bryan Williams will headline the 8th annual Baller’s Ball. Tickets are available for pre-order to the Halloween-themed N.O. affair.
In February, the Big Tymers made an appearance alongside Juvenile and others. However, that event was not billed as a Big Tymers show, despite the symbolic armistice. In recent months, Birdman has seemed to consider the overall legacy of the label he and his brother Slim founded. The mogul vowed to release 500 early songs from the vaults, as he’s re-signed early artists like Juvy and Turk. B.G. is incarcerated. Birdman and Wayne, who have likened their relationship to a father and son, are still in a legal battle over more than $51 million over royalties and advance money. Mannie Fresh is currently working with Yasiin Bey (fka Mos Def).
Earlier this year, Cash Money’s old tour-mates, the Ruff Ryders began their 20th anniversary with a hometown show in Brooklyn. DMX, Eve, The LOX, Drag-On and Swizz Beatz subsequently took the R.R. tour on the road.
#BonusBeat: Mannie’s latest production, “Dive!” a collaboration with Big Freedia:
This released on Queen Diva Music.