On Wednesday, writers and correspondents from across America were flown out to South Beach, Miami, for a special press conference held by DJ Khaled & We The Best taking place the following day. Day 1 of the 48-hour trip included complimentary flights, an airport shuttle, and a one-night stay at the legendary South Beach W Hotel. We The Best showed up and showed out and made it clear why they are the best after giving writers the 5-star treatment. Guests were greeted with cocktails on arrival and left to enjoy themselves for an entire night, all while wondering what the press conference had in store the next day. From poolside to beachside views to luxury amenities inside the hotel, there was more than enough to do to enjoy Miami for a night.
Day 2 of the trip was the press conference and after-party, and the energy was electric. As the media entered the iconic Mr.Chow, where the press conference was held, immediately to the right-hand side was a step & repeat with We The Best, Belaire, Def Jam, Roc Nation, and Air Jordan logos. At this moment, it became abundantly clear that Khaled might have more than one announcement. Writers enjoyed lite bites and complimentary cocktails while waiting for the conference to begin. We The Best, were the best at keeping everything secretive from the announcements themselves to who would be in attendance.
Just before Khaled’s arrival, the media were shown a video of Diddy sending a heart-felt message about Khaled before introducing him. DJ Khaled arrived fashionably late and dropped the biggest announcement first as journalists were on the edge of their seats waiting to find out what the announcement could be. Khaled was a ball of energy as always and was overflowing with positivity and love as he thanked guests for traveling and taking time out of their schedules for this news. Khaled kicked off the good news by saying, similar to when Lebron James held a press conference to announce he was taking his talents to Miami, Khaled announced that he and We The Best will now be partnering with Def Jam Records moving forward and that all upcoming releases like his next album will be a Universal Music Group / Def Jam release. Not only this, but Khaled will also be joining Def Jam/UMG as a Global Creative Consultant.
DJ Khaled states, “This new chapter marks a special time for me. The energy at this point in my career is at an all-time high and I’m grateful to Sir Lucian Grainge for allowing me to join his empire at this stage in my journey. Together, we will achieve even greater heights and take it to the next level. I feel blessed and so inspired with renewed energy. I’m excited to not only partner but to come back home to Def Jam. Tunji Balogun is not only an extraordinary A&R but a true music man and visionary who continuously is responsible for introducing the world to some of its next greatest superstars. I’m excited to join my sister and visionary executive LaTrice Burnette once again, as we have had tremendous success on every single project we have collaborated on in the past. Def Jam is the culture and together we will make history yet once again.”
Sir Lucian Grainge, UMG’s Chairman and CEO, said, “DJ Khaled is a great artist, hitmaker, mentor, and cultural innovator. It gives me great pleasure to welcome him home to UMG where we look forward to working together to amplify his brilliant creative instincts and unique vision.”
“Beyond a proven hitmaker, incredible producer, undeniable artist, and consummate showman, DJ Khaled occupies the rarified air of cultural icon,” said Tunji Balogun, Chairman and CEO of Def Jam Recordings. “His uncanny ability to continuously have his finger on the pulse of the culture, to reach audiences all over the world in innovative yet authentic ways, and his remarkable savvy for marketing, promoting, and eventizing everything he touches is absolutely second to none. We are thrilled to partner with DJ Khaled and We The Best, both as a multi-platinum, award-winning artist and as a valued executive. Without a doubt, Khaled can only make us better.”
“DJ Khaled has been a dear friend and close collaborator of mine for over a decade,” said LaTrice Burnette, Executive Vice President, Def Jam Recordings/President, 4th & Broadway. “Throughout our years together at Epic, Khaled and I developed a special working bond and broke barriers through a united vision, focused partnership, and hard work. I have a tremendous respect for Khaled’s artistry, creativity, work ethic, marketing savvy, and boundless positive energy. I’m thrilled to welcome him back home to Def Jam, and can’t wait to see what we cook up next.”