Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Shante didn't

I picked up a story from the New York Daily News last week about how Roxanne Shante had had to battle Warners to get them to honour a clause in her contract to fund her PhD.

It turns out to be less than solid: Ben Sheffer has been digging for Slate and he finds no trace of Shante having completed any degree, much less one funded by Warners:

When told of Warner's denial that it financed her education, Shanté repeated, "Hip-hop paid for my education, kept me from going to the streets." But she was unable to provide detail. "To my knowledge, that [Warner] is exactly where the checks came from. … All I know is that it was done." In a later e-mail, Shanté wrote that she was informed by Cold Chillin's former CEO Tyrone Williams that Warner "along with another party that chose to stay anonymous paid for my education." Shanté did not respond to Slate's request that she put us in touch with Williams.

This seems to be a bit of a shift from "Warners were contractually obliged to pay for my eduction" to "the money I made from music, which came from Warners as far as I know."

It looks like the New York Daily News hadn't really done very much to stack up its story in the first place.