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Does Drake Have A Ghostwriter? Truth Behind The Hits

Drake is one of the most popular rappers and songwriters of the past decade, and this Canadian musician has been questioned in the past about whether or not he’s used a ghostwriter to make his hit songs. Well, we’re going to dive into the question, does Drake have a ghostwriter and give you the truth behind the hits, so read on to find out more! 

Does Drake Use Ghostwriters?

September 6, 2010 – Drake. Image source: musicisentropy, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Rapper Drake has used ghostwriters in the past to write some of his music, and all of these ghostwriters were more than willing to work with him on his albums over the years. Not all of them want credit for their work, and these artists will allow the rapper to take credit without acknowledgment for their contributions, such as for a verse or line in a song. 

However, there are other artists who have wanted to get credit for their contributions to his tracks and albums. There are several fans of the rapper who believe a lot of his most successful songs were ghostwritten and the person behind the scenes allowed him to take full credit for it, so let’s look at the ghostwriters that we know he has used in the past. 

Who Are Drake’s Ghostwriters? 

There have been a few controversies surrounding Drake and his use of ghostwriters in the past, with a few different people being brought up as the ghostwriters behind his music. We’re going to get into which artists may have been ghostwriting some of his most popular songs. 

Quentin Miller 

September 5, 2015 – Meek Mill at Made In America 2015 VII. Image source: Chris Sikich from Philadelphia, USA, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

One of Drake’s ghostwriters was outed thanks to a beef between Meek Mill and Drake when Meek Mill accused him of using a songwriter and known ghostwriter out of Atlanta, Georgia, named Quentin Miller. This was the most famous controversy surrounding Drake and his use of ghostwriters. 

For a long time, neither Miller nor Drake confirmed the allegations, although most fans believed Meek Mill that Drake used him so that he could make his tracks flow better. However, when Miller was involved in another situation with Nas, he finally set the record straight about Drake. 

Miller revealed during an interview he had with VladTV early in 2023 that he indeed did ghostwrite for Drake, and that he wasn’t compensated enough for his contributions on If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late. He was given songwriting credits for his work on that particular album, which ended up going triple-platinum

He went on to talk about how he had a deal with Tricky Stewart, who was a producer and songwriter, but that he did not get any money in this publishing deal for the 2015 work. He also said he did not appreciate being dragged into the beef between Meek Mill and Drake, saying it was inconsiderate and that he had a family to take care of.

August 11, 2011 – Drake at B-Bun Concert at the Sound Academy, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Image source: The Come Up Show, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

He added that the publishing deal was horrible because he never got the publishing checks for the work he did with Drake and that any money he got was under the table. It wasn’t until about 2020 when he got out of this publishing deal he signed back in 2011. So for Miller, he was hoping his writing with a huge artist like Drake would change his life and his future, and he acknowledged he probably ruined his career and prospects by having this deal. 

The Weeknd 

Another artist who may have been a ghostwriter is The Weeknd, who has collaborated with Drake multiple times over the years. He has Drake to thank for making him a success, and the two have been on each other’s albums and songs over the years. 

Cameras / Good Ones Go Interlude (Medley)

That being said, The Weeknd may have written more of the tracks they collaborated on than we know. Songs such as Cameras/Good Ones Go, Crew Love, and Shot For Me. When you look at these tracks, there is a vibe in the songs that seems to be more of what The Weeknd is known for than Drake, so there’s a chance that he was ghostwriting those hit tracks the two collaborated on completely. 

July 5, 2018 – The Weeknd performing live. Image source: Nicolas Padovani, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

For those songs, he was given credit for songwriting and singing, but multiple people allege he was the sole songwriter on their collaborations. As for that allegation, Drake denies that, but when you listen to those tracks, the tones and the flow of those songs seem more like what we’d hear from The Weeknd than from Drake. 

PartyNextDoor

November 24, 2016 – PartyNextDoor performing. Image source: The Come Up Show, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

An unconfirmed ghostwriter for Drake is PartyNextDoor, and this allegation came to the surface around the time of the Meek Mill beef and allegations Miller was a ghostwriter. PartyNextDoor did speak up about this a little and just said artists often trade and write songs together, but people took this to mean Drake is using other artists’ material without paying them or giving them proper credit. 

21 Savage 

June 16, 2018 – 21 Savage performing at the Austin360 Amphitheater in Austin, Texas. Image source: Ralph Arvesen from Round Mountain, Texas, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

There isn’t much that is known about whether 21 Savage is a ghostwriter for Drake, but he did say that he and Drake often exchange verses and other work while they were collaborating. Again, fans have taken this to mean there’s a likelihood 21 Savage was the sole writer of the collaborations and not given proper credit with Drake passing some of it off as his own. 

Noah Shebib 

Noah Shebib, also known as 40 or OVO40, is the producer for Drake, and he’s given credit for a lot of the work the rapper has produced over the years, such as songs and his albums. While most fans don’t think twice about this, other fans and some who don’t like Drake feel that it means he is just listing his producer as the songwriter when, in reality, it’s another artist who should be getting the credit. 

October 17, 2019 – At a campaign rally in Brampton, Noah Shebib endorses NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh during the Canadian federal election. Image source: Andrew Louis, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

There are multiple people who think Shebib wrote the tracks or was used in place of the true artist that should be given credit. When you listen to the songs to which he is given credit, they are different in terms of energy and the flow of the lyrics compared to the tracks that Drake wrote himself. 

Does Drake Write Any Of His Songs?

While Drake may use ghostwriters, he does write a lot of his own tracks. We know this because he couldn’t be the mega rapper that he is if he was leaning completely on the content of someone else, so he’s definitely writing his own material to an extent or else he wouldn’t be as famous or popular as he still is today. 

September 9, 2017 – Drake at the premiere of The Carter Effect, 2017 Toronto Film Festival. Image source: GabboT, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

A majority of Drake’s discography is his own unique songs and lyrics, but in anything where there is a collaboration involved, people think a ghostwriter was used or the artist in the collaboration did most of the writing. For example, if there is a song that PartyNextDoor, Quentin Miller, Noah, or TheWeeknd are involved in, then those are the tracks that are questionable. 

Why Would Drake Use a Ghostwriter? 

Several artists that span multiple genres use a ghostwriter for songs, and Drake would use them for the same reasons that so many other artists use ghostwriters. Sometimes, the artist has other projects going on that are going to take up more of their time or need more attention, so they employ a ghostwriter for tracks. 

July 19, 2010 – Writer’s block. Drew Coffman, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Additionally, an artist such as him might end up having writer’s block and will utilize another writer when they feel they cannot write for some reason. There are times when you sit down to write, and it’s just not going to happen. So when such blocks occur, a ghostwriter might be called in to help out. 

Drake may also just need some time away from the music for a while, such as when he needs to focus on his family or other personal matters. It’s easy to get burned out in the music business just like anywhere else, so when a mental break is needed, a ghostwriter might step in. 

How Many Of Drake’s Songs Are Ghostwritten?

If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late is the album where a lot of people feel Drake used a ghostwriter. Four songs did have credits going to Quentin Miller, but beyond that, we aren’t sure if other tracks from that album were written by someone else. 

It’s hard to tell how many songs were ghostwritten because he doesn’t confirm any of that information, as we don’t expect him to. There is also the fact that the other artists seem to keep their involvement to themselves because they fear retribution or just are trying to provide for their families and don’t want to be involved in the drama surrounding these topics.

What Do Other Artists Say About Drake Using Ghostwriters? 

2018 to 2019 – Drake and Migos performing at MSG for the Aubre and the Three Migos Tour. Image source: RyanCornell28, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Drake has a lot of support in the music industry and not that many people have come out to criticize him regardless of whether or not he’s using a ghostwriter. We will tell you about some of the supporters he has in the music business. 

Quentin Miller 

The man at the center of the controversy is still a supporter of Drake, saying he’s one of the top in the business and he’s a “sleeping giant” and one of the chosen ones musically. He has said that the rapper remixes his songs, rewrites tracks, paraphrases material, and also writes his own work, regardless of his involvement in that work. He did get some negative backlash for being a ghostwriter and songwriter for Drake, but he still stands by him. 

Nicki Minaj 

June 25, 2012 – Nicki Minaj performing at the HMV Hammersmith Apollo in London, England, on the Pink Friday Tour. Image source: Rory from Glasgow, United Kingdom, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Rapper Nicki Minaj loves Drake and was one of the early supporters of his during the saga with Miller and his potential use of ghostwriters. She said that his songs and the lyrics are impressive, and anyone who hates his records isn’t paying attention. Drake and Minaj have collaborated and worked together for years, and she stands behind him and loves him. 

Nickelus F

While Nickelus F was one of the people who was briefly asked about his involvement as a ghostwriter given he’s collaborated with Drake, he quickly shot all of those rumors down. He went on to say that Drake is one of the most talented artists out there and that his writing skills are top-notch and worthy of attention. He said that the rapper has songwriting abilities that simply cannot be questioned, and he never was a ghostwriter for him at any point. 

Noah Shebib 

Noah '40' Shebib on producing Drake | Native Instruments

Shebib has come out several times to support Drake during the allegations of ghostwriting songs, and he said that Drake himself wrote a majority of his songs and albums. He added that the rapper should be considered one of the best artists of his generation, and he is a talented and smart songwriter. 

He went on to say that he personally has seen the process Drake goes through when he’s writing material, and it’s similar to how someone would write an essay, with an outline, drafts, edits, and more. He added that it bothers him when so many people say the rapper isn’t writing his work because he’s very dedicated to his work and takes it very seriously. 

Meek Mill

Meek Mill Ft. Nicki Minaj & Chris Brown - All Eyes On You (Official Video)

When it comes to people criticizing Drake for ghostwriting or potentially using a ghostwriter, the one person who has battled him about this repeatedly is Meek Mill. While some other artists have been critical of Drake, Meek Mill stands out because of his public feud with him about this topic. 

Meek Mill thinks that ghostwriting shouldn’t be used in the music business, and he has said more than once that whether we’re talking about Drake’s songs or his books, it’s not Drake behind the scenes writing it, and it’s someone else who isn’t getting the credit that should be thanked for the work. 

September 2, 2021 – Equipment for writing. Image source: Fajrul Fala, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

That being said, ghostwriting is commonplace for both books and songs, and it’s accepted by a large majority of people across the business. Ghostwriting often involves sharing hooks, tracks, lyrics, and verses, and it’s something that has gone on for many years without too much being said about it. 

When it comes to rap and hip hop though, these artists and the fans of this music seem to have a higher standard where it’s not as accepted to utilize a ghostwriter. As for why this is, we don’t really know, except it seems to be frowned upon more in these two genres than in pop or country music for example. 

Drake - Hotline Bling

As for Drake, he is one of the biggest names in the music business and allegations of ghostwriting haven’t seemed to slow him down. He is continuing to write music and record albums, so it appears that he doesn’t seem to worry too much about what other people say about him or say about the potential he has ghostwriters in the background coming up with material.

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