As the Atlanta rapper told Sharpe, by the time he got to signing his first record deal he was already aware of what to look out for when it comes to contracts with labels. “I know what I’m supposed to be receiving and what not to give away,” he said around the 2:30 mark of the clip above. “At this point in my career, I find it honorable to be able to tell new artists when they come up to me... You know, 21 Savage, [Young] Thug. A lot of them come up to me, ‘Ae man, give me a million, Tip. I don’t care what you do, just give me a million and let me handle it from there.’ And I'm like, 'Nah, I ain't gonna do that.'"
Tip also explained that it’s typical in a 360 deal for record labels to provide artists with a sizeable budget or up-front payment in exchange for full or close to full music ownership rights. T.I. wanted to avoid owning anything that Savage or Thug would go on to produce.
“'If I give you a million, I gotta take back something that’s gonna be worth way more, and we ain’t gon’ be able to be friends from there,'" he recalled telling them. "I always tell ’em, man, ‘Don’t worry about the money up front ’cause it’s gon’ come.' I remember telling that to Slime, I remember telling that to 21. And even Savage, every time he sees me now, he’ll hit me and say, ‘Ay, it came.’ And that put a smile on my face because I just know how impactful every generation has the opportunity to be even more than the last.”
Thug was closely associated with T.I.’s Hustle Gang before he achieved mainstream success. He ultimately signed with Gucci Mane’s 1017 Brick Squad imprint, which he released a number of projects on before joining the 300 Entertainment family. 21, meanwhile, released his first few projects independently until he signed with Epic Records in 2017 while maintaining ownership of his masters.