Joe Budden Questions Gucci Mane’s A&R Skills After 1017 Woes

Joe Budden has raised skepticism regarding Gucci Mane’s A&R talent following a host of his New 1017 Records signees have either been dropped, locked up, or in one case killed.

Budden discussed the topic in the latest episode of his podcast, where he talked about recent arrest of Mac Critter, a 1017 signer who was charged with first-degree murder in connection with a fatal shooting in December 2022.

After some back and forth with his co-hosts about 1017’s cultural impact on Atlanta Hip Hop, Budden theorized that maybe Gucci’s skills and judgment as a label executive shouldn’t be as revered as they are.

“You guys sound crazy to me,” he snapped back at his co-host’s praise for Guwop. “Who people are signing, how people are signing them and why people are signing them needs to be under close scrutiny, I think, from all parties involved in the music industry.”

The former Slaughterhouse MC went on to compare the rap industry to sports and how signing tactics had changed amid a string of injured players a decade ago.

“The same thing has happened in rap in the last decade, where we’ve never seen so many people die,” Budden said. “We’ve never seen so many shootings, stabbings, gang beef, arrests, RICOs. I’ve never seen that in Hip Hop.”

“That conversation runs parallel to, for me and the rest of the musicians, the death of A&R. The death of musicianship. They’re together for me,” he added.

“So when I say Gucci Mane’s scouting needs to be investigated, it’s because it’s now, what? 8, 9, 10? I don’t know. A whole list that just suffers from the various hitting curses and I don’t think that is a coincidence anymore.”

Gucci Mane’s current 1017 roster has had some bad luck recently. K Shiday and Roboy were both dropped, while Pooh Shiesty and Foogiano are both currently incarcerated. The former was in April last year sentenced to five years in prison for his role in a robbery in October 2020, while the latter was also sentenced to five years in prison fiddling with his ankle monitor and evading authorities for months.

22-year-old Big Scarr died last month after suffering from an accidental overdose. His family has maintained a strained relationship with Gucci Mane, claiming the 1017 leader did not contribute to the rapper’s funeral expenses or even attend the service.

Scarr’s brother Quezz Ruthless, who was seen allegedly filming a music video at Scarr’s funeral, was the first to criticize Gucci, accusing him in an Instagram Live rant of Scarr’s family stiffened over funeral costs.

“You tell them you’re going to pay for the funeral, you’re lying,” he claimed in a recent Instagram Live. “You didn’t have to lie! You don’t have to go ghost either, cuh. It would be paid for both ways. You could have just said you don’t have the money. You don’t get any respect for that, cuh.”

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He added: “The minute those people got on the phone to ask if you’d pay for the funeral, you blocked them. It’s not right, cuh. You’re not straight. You’re only trying to act real. You posted Scarr talking about long live – bruh you do nothing cuh.

However, Gucci’s wife Keyshia Ka’Oir came to her husband’s defense and took to her Instagram story to share two receipts from NJ Ford & Sons Funeral Home for a total of $20,000.

Ka’Oir wrote that everyone should just “leave her husband alone” and that the payment was made directly to the undertaker. “20k total @laflare1017 what you did to these people man,” she wrote, before adding in a separate post: “We also sent flowers and not even a thank you” along with a breaking heart emoji.

Big Scarr’s sister Alexandra Woods, who had helped reprimand Gucci for his alleged lack of involvement in her brother’s funeral, Ka’Oir replied, saying the money barely made a dent.

“That 10K helps with nothing but obituaries and flowers, boo,” Woods said on Instagram Live. “My brother is worth more than 10K.”

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