Teddy Riley recently sat down and spoke to HipHopDX about being offered the chance to be a partner at Death Row Records by Suge Knight. Riley went into detail on why he ended up passing on the offer made.
Riley noted that his choice stemmed from the fact that he used to be involved in a certain way of life that Death Row was mirroring at the time, saying he had no desire “to go back down that lane” with the record label.
Riley ended up saying, “Suge wanted to partner. I didn’t wanna do that. I wasn’t afraid of it cause I’ve dealt with his mentor, which was Gene Griffin. That was my godfather. I just didn’t want to go back down that lane of dealing with gangsters and things like that. I came from that life, I was once in that life, and I desired not to be back in that. I felt like that would have been a step backward.” Riley also noted he thinks the offer was only directed at him due to Dr. Dre’s departure from the label in 1996.
Riley ultimately ended up saying, “I think [the offer] only happened because of Dre leaving. That’s how I got Dre on ‘No Diggity’.” He continued saying, “I guess 2Pac was in the midst of leaving, but he was still with Suge and did [‘Toss It Up’] with Jodeci and Aaron Hall. So I guess that was a shot against [me, Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre], letting us know that he’s still got those guys on his side. I was still doing what I was doing with Jimmy and Dre. It was a crazy situation.”