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Drake Cameo at Lil Wayne Fest Creates Friction Between Apple, Tidal

Drake's appearance at Lil Wayne's LilWeezyAna fest was cut out of Tidal's live-stream due to the rapper's exclusive deal with Apple Music. Josh Brasted/WireImage
The cold war between music streaming services heated up Friday night as a surprise collaboration between Drake and Lil Wayne – two rappers scooped up during the artist exclusive arms race – caused friction between Tidal and Apple Music. The situation occurred at Lil Wayne's Lil Weezyana Festival in New Orleans, where Drake stopped by to deliver a brief three-song cameo. One problem: Jay Z's Tidal, which named Lil Wayne as a co-owner in July, was live-streaming the festival, creating a conflict of interest since Drake is Apple Music's marquee signee.
As a result of Drake's appearance, the Tidal live-stream had to briefly pause while the Toronto rapper was onstage. "Apple is interfering with artistry and will not allow this artist to stream. Sorry for Big Brother’s inconvenience," the Tidal Twitter notified listeners as Drake took the stage. "We'll be back after the performance." Drake performed "HYFR" with Wayne, his remix of Fetty Wap's "My Way" and "Back to Back" during his unannounced Lil Weezyana appearance.
According to the New York Post, as soon as it was confirmed that Drake would stop by the New Orleans festival, which reportedly donated some proceeds to New Orleans-area afterschool programs, Apple Music threatened Tidal with a $20 million lawsuit if Drake showed up on the live-stream. "Legal letters have been sent to Tidal warning that Drake cannot appear on the Tidal stream of the festival, either solo or part of a group, and if the warning was ignored, the liabilities could be up to $20 million," an unnamed source told the newspaper.
Representatives from Tidal and Apple Music did not respond to Rolling Stone's request for comment.

Prince Nnamdi

Prince Nnamdi

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