Steve Stoute Explains Why He Did Not Break-Up Dame & Jay-Z + Nas & More

In an interview with Complex, Steve Stoute talks about his new book, along with his professional relationships with some of the entertainment industry’s top hip-hop artist (Jay-Z and Nas). Peep a few excerpts:

Complex: There was an interview where Dame Dash talked about the breakup of Roc-A-Fella. He said one of the reasons why was because you and Jay had gotten real close and his influence waned.

If your relationship with somebody’s falling apart, don’t blame it on the third party cause we’ve gotten close. Jay-Z and Dame Dash obviously grew far apart. Dame felt like they grew apart because Jay and I grew closer as friends. The truth is that Jay is a loyal guy, so that wouldn’t have made a difference either way had their relationship been where it should’ve been.

Complex: At one point, he said that he felt like you were spending too much time with Jay. Did that cause friction in your relationship?

I refer back to my previous answer, you go through a period of time in a relationship and he didn’t have to say that. Any aspect of the relationship in which we didn’t see eye to eye would bother me.

It didn’t make a difference whether it was hanging out with Jay too much or the fact that he didn’t like that his album came out in March when he felt like it should have came out in September. It don’t matter.

You don’t want to have any disagreements with a friend. You know? Not disagreements that become public record and that you still have to answer questions about 10 years later. [Laughs.]

Complex: Yeah, Kim was huge too

Not like Foxy. Foxy’s first album—Jay wrote the album—are you kidding me? Foxy’s first album was crazy. I mean, crazy. Foxy sold more records than Kim, Foxy was huge. Nas was huge. AZ was good. Nature came in and Nature was talented. We had Dr. Dre on the production and Trackmasters.

But we didn’t make the right album and we had people arguing. I want to make the argument from my heart but the reality is that I couldn’t get these guys working together.

Complex: And another thing that seemed to be in the works was the Jay-Z Jeep. What happened to the Jeep deal?

The Jay-Z Jeep deal was a part of the Jay-Z Blue deal. In fact, the story’s right over there if you want to look at it. If you want to read it, I had it framed. We showed the car at the Detroit auto show. Everything in Zach’s book is not accurate. I told him that, by the way. He got close on a lot of stuff, but it was not 100% accurate. Not at all.

Peep the full interview here.