Top 10 Moments of 2009: #10 The Inc. And R&B Part Ways: Ashanti and Lloyd

After churning out hit singles like “Baby,” “You,” “Foolish,” and “Get It Shawty,” accompanied by Hip Hop classics “Venni Vetti Vicci” and “Rule 3:36,” the movement and dynasty that was The Inc. (formerly Murda Inc) went off course in 2009. Citing relationships gone awry, both R&B/pop talent Ashanti and Lloyd parted ways with the movement and man that helped them reach the charts – Irv Gotti. While little has been said about the state of The Inc. at present time, Spring of 2009 and early Fall of 2009 was filled with explosive video interviews and words that shed light on what really went on behind the scenes at a label that seemed to have both R&B and Hip Hop on lock. After switching things up with the controversial single “The Way That I Love You” and album “The Declaration” in 2008, Ashanti woke up to bad news in May. In an explosive interview The Inc. frontman, Irv Gotti , told MTV News “The relationship has run its course” before confirming that he would be dropping Ashanti from his roster. While the interview was shocking, it came just as Gotti wrapped up the second season of his hit VH1 reality series ‘Gotti’s Way’. During that season viewers witnessed Gotti struggle to keep his label alive in a troublesome climate. While economic and industry related troubles were relevant, Gotti insisted that his decision to boot Ashanti was strictly based on their relationship and her decision to deviate from the winning formula that produced songs like “Rock Wit U (Awww Baby),” “Rain On Me” and “Happy”. Even though much speculation surrounding the ousting of Ashanti plagued the net, the singer remained mum when it came to Gotti and her future until late summer of 2009 when she hit the Broadway stage in a revived production of ‘The Wiz’. Confirming that she is indeed working on a follow up to her last The Inc. album, ‘The Declaration’, Ashanti looks forward to releasing new music in 2010 through her own imprint ‘Written Entertainment’. While Ashanti has remained mum on what exactly transpired between she and Irv Gotti and the state of the label, fellow singer and at one time collaborating artist (“Southside”), Lloyd, had no problem in setting the record straight after his shocking departure from The Inc. just one month later. Stating that there was no bad blood in a statement issued through All Hip Hop, Lloyd later sat down for a tell all interview and follow up with Singersroom. Calling his release, which he worked out, a “learning experience,” Lloyd eventually came clean about his time at the label. Citing the fact that he was forced to record his own music with his own money and his own team while under contract, Lloyd went onto say that his most successful hit to date (“You”) was nearly halted by the label. “We tried to create a buzz around the industry with a song called “You” with Lil Wayne. This was a song I need to be released (sic). At the time I had no support from my label. I was advised to not release these records and sometimes my phone calls would not be returned,” Lloyd alleged after telling the interviewing party that his family had been displaced as a result of Hurricane Katrina, prior to the release of “You”. Due to the success of the single Lloyd went on to say that he was forced to stay with The Inc after “You” due to a distribution agreement that surfaced shortly after the single began to rise. Nonetheless, the Georgia based singer says he’s not dwelling on the past but instead looks forward to a bright future. Speaking with Singersroom, Lloyd confirmed a future that includes a new album and the early fall 2009 single “Pusha”. Working with a number of producers including DJ Khaled and The Runners, Lloyd could have a new album out as early as 2010.

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