By Quibian Salazar-Moreno
Ever since Rick Rubin headed over to Columbia Records, he’s been trying to work in a successful scheme for the legendary label. One of the major additions is the appointment of Kyambo “Hip-Hop” Joshua as president of Columbia’s urban department. Joshua is the former A&R at Roc-A-Fella Records and is responsible for bringing Kanye to the Roc (he raps about him on College Dropout’s “Last Call”) and developing the sound of Roc-A-Fella’s sound.
Joshua then went and hired Kanye’s mentor and former Common producer, Dion “No I.D.” Wilson, to head Columbia’s urban A&R department.
"Hip-Hop and I have been close friends for a long time, and now that he’s the president of Columbia‘s urban department, it makes sense," Wilson told Billboard. "We’re trying to create an A&R position that’s both an A&R and production situation. Everything needs to be correct. I’m not just looking for a title. I want to make a useful change in what’s going on, it has to be more than babysitting. Hip-Hop told me to get writers and musicians together as well as all of the resources so we can offer artists more than just direction. I hate to use the same example everyone uses but similar to how they put together Motown. We want to put together records the old way."
Although they’re still mapping out their plans, Joshua said that one of the first thing they will do is get R&B artist Maxwell to release his long-gestating album, “Black Summer’s Night.”