Every artist strives to be the best of the best in their chosen field in the music industry, but that said, some need a little helping hand now and again.
Ghostwriting is a term that pops up now and again, most notably in the hip-hop and rap genres, and it’s not something anyone wants to be called out on. It’s started beefs, ruined reputations and even made fans question the credibility of their favourite artists. For those unfamiliar with the term, ghostwriting is when a musician enlists the help of external songwriters to occasionally inspire their creative process, sometimes even doing the hard bits for them.
Below we’ve rounded up the top five musicians who have been busted for using ghostwriters. Continue on to find out who’s guilty as charged.
Diddy responded to critics in his 2001 hit, ‘Badboy For Life‘ about the long fueled rumours he had enlisted writers to help with his lyrics. “Don’t worry if I write rhymes/ I write checks” he states carelessly even though back then ghostwriting was a very big deal.
Kim’s authenticity was questioned back in early 2012 when Charli Baltimore alleged that she wasn’t responsible for any of her own lyrics. After the allegations were made, Antonio Walker releases a contract between him and Kim showing she had failed to pay him for his help. It was widely known prior to this that Biggie Smalls had helped the female rapper with her work.
It was reported in 2012 that the hip-hop veteran, Nas, had used several ghostwriters, including Jay Electronica and stic.man, to write the majority of his album Untitled (2008). This shocked many fans of the scene especially when both the artists spoke out on Twitter and didn’t deny the allegations, only emphasized Nas’ writing ability.
The most widely reported account of Beyoncé‘s using writers is from her song ‘If I Were A Boy‘. The song was originally written by BC Jean and when she was not credited on the track, she released the original version of the song, which was almost identical.
Drizzy found himself caught up in a ghostwriting scandal back in 2014 where he was supposedly going to be sued by a Toronto woman over unpaid work. Although this turned out to be false, it subsequently revealed some of Drakes other ghostwriters, a woman named Shi Wisdom who appears in my of the VIEWS stars credits. Wisdom was said to have penned the song ‘R.I.P‘ for Drake before the track was later given to Rita Ora.