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Damon Dash
Damon Dash

Birth name

Damon Dash

Born

3 May 1971 (age 45)
New York City, New York, United States

Occupation(s)

Entrepreneur, executive producer

Years active

1990-present

Label

Roc-A-Fella, Dame Dash Music Group, DD172

Damon "Dame" Dash (born 3 May 1971) is an American entrepreneur best known as Jay Z's former manager and business partner at Roc-A-Fella Records, which he helped found. Dash began his career as a manager of the groups The Future Sound and Original Flavor, who were both signed to Atlantic Records by DJ Clark Kent. Kent introduced Dash to Jay Z, and the two became close friends. Dash became Jay Z's manager, and sold his records independently after no labels would sign him. They eventually decided to found Roc-A-Fella Records in 1995 alongside street hustler Kareem "Biggs" Burke, who invested his money from dealing into the label. The following year, Jay Z released his debut album, Reasonable Doubt, which many critics still consider to be his best album. In 1997, Roc-A-Fella signed a distribution deal with Def Jam Recordings, but Dash insisted that he, Jay Z and Burke retain half-ownership of the label and full title to Jay Z's master recordings.

Dash also created the clothing line Rocawear, which brought in a reported $400 million a year in revenue at its peak. Dash would later sign Kanye West, Cam'ron, Beanie Sigel and Jim Jones to Roc-A-Fella. However, Jay Z had grown weary of Dash's volatile temper and his method of running Roc-A-Fella. Jay Z sold their remaining half of Roc-A-Fella to Def Jam for $10 million, and subsequently became president of the label. The following year, Jay Z bought Dash out of Rocawear for $30 million. Dash and Jay Z's friendship has since been strained. 

Since losing Roc-A-Fella, Dash's efforts have been inconstant. Although he has run additional record labels and served as a manager for artists, he has also run an art gallery, a whiskey brand, a motor-oil company, a clothing line, and released movies.

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