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"You Cannot Leave!": Majid Jordan Describe Their Experiences at Drake's Factory-Style Songwriting Camps

"It was like a studio camp almost, there were tents in there – literally tents. I slept in a tent in the studio".

Oh, boy. At this point, we could enter into another in-depth discussion about Drake's use of ghostwriters, and what it means for his creative output, but it feels like we're beyond that now. Meek Mill's exposé – where he revealed some of the biggest tracks from Drake's 2015 mixtape/album/thing had been composed by the ghostwriter Quentin Miller – enlightened the public-en-masse to hip-hop's inner-circle of ghostwriters, but the fact of the matter is that that's always been the case.


Whether it's Kanye and Consequence, Ice Cube supposedly writing a lot of NWA's biggest hits, or that infamous (and incorrectly reported) story about Nas ghostwriting Will Smith's "Gettin' Jiggy Wit It", rappers have always collaborated with other rappers to create the best end product possible. That's just how it works – look at the credits to your favourite album.

What we haven't heard much about, though, is the conditions these collaborators, ghostwriters, or producers can be subjected to – which is exactly what makes this recent Hot 97 interview with Majid Jordan so interesting. In it, the songwriting/producing duo detail how they were brought to OVO's studio in 2013, right as sessions for Nothing Was The Same were beginning. They would work on songs over and over again, until something clicked. Oh, and they slept in a tent.

"They basically put us in the studio, it was like a studio camp almost, there were tents in there – 'make beats! stay in the dungeon! You cannot leave! You can't tell anyone you're working on this project!' Literally tents… real tents in the vocal booths, everything. I slept in a tent in the studio".

Given his riches, you would think that Drake would set his songwriters up with something a little more lavish than a canvas and polyster coffin, but there it is. The OVO songwriting camp is a literal camp. For what it's worth, though, Majid Jordan eventually ended up writing "Hold On, We're Going Home" for Drake – which they recieved a feature credit on, arguably launching the duo's career. So, maybe worth camping out for.

"We put it on a USB for Drake to drive home to one night. He drove home, we showed up the next day, and he had tracked it. 40's sitting there with his arms up in the studio and he's like, 'We got it, we've got the single, we did it'".

Watch the interview below. Or skip to 4:13 to hear the bit about tents.