Damon Dash (born May 3 1971 in Harlem, New York) is an African-American label executive; the former CEO and co-founder of Roc-A-Fella Records with Shawn "Jay-Z" Carter and Kareem "Biggs" Burke. Roc-A-Fella, specializing almost exclusively in hip-hop music, branched out with several spin-off ventures into other fields as well, notably hip-hop fashion (Rocawear Clothing) and film (Roc-A-Fella Films and, later, Dash Films).
He was also known in Europe for his ambitious project with pop singer Victoria Beckham. He produced an album worth of hip-hop inspired tracks for the pop star in 2003 which culminated with the release of her double-A sided single "This Groove/Let Your Head Go." which reached #3 on the UK charts. After public disputes with her manager Simon Fuller of 19 Management over the "urban sounds," Beckham's album "Come Together" produced by Damon Dash was eventually shelved. Tracks featuring Cam'ron, M.O.P, and other members of Cam'ron's Diplomats crew have been leaked on the Internet. He also signed Beckham as the face of Rocawear in 2003. Dash later sold his stake in Rocawear for $30 million to former partner, Shawn "Jay-Z" Carter.
In late 2004, Dash sold his interest in Roc-A-Fella to parent company Island Def Jam Records for $10 million, and founded the Dame Dash Music Group as a new venture with the senior record company. Dash's other businesses include Armadale Vodka, Dash Management, PRO-KEDS, Tiret Watches, the Rachel Roy Clothing Line, an investment in New York nightclub The Plumm, Dash/DiBella Boxing and his new CEO Clothing line.
Damon Dash produced a reality show for BET called "Ultimate Hustler", in which Dash determined which one of 15 entrepreneurs was the "ultimate hustler" through a series of business challenges. John Coleman and John Rhodes filed a lawsuit against Dash, BET, Damon Dash Music Group, Dash Films and Huck Films claiming they originated the "Ultimate Hustler" concept. Dash was featured in another reality show pilot centered around late rapper Ol' Dirty Bastard, who Dash signed to a record deal shortly after the rapper's release from prison.
Dash's forays into film, both under the Roc-A-Fella Films banner and later under the Dash Film banner, have resulted in at least one critically acclaimed film (The Woodsman starring Kevin Bacon and Mos Def) and another well-received film, Paid in Full (starring Mekhi Phifer). Lesser acclaimed film endeavors by Dash include State Property and its commercially more successful sequel. He also appeared as an immortal in the movie Highlander: Endgame and as himself on the television program The O'Reilly Factor. He has also appeared in the 2005 documentary film Just for Kicks.
In June 2008 Jones Apparel Group purchased a 50% Equity Stake in Rachel Roy's, fashion Brand along with TSM Capital.
Dash attended the South Kent School, a prep school in CT.
He is married to fashion designer Rachel Roy with whom he has a daughter named Ava who was born in 1999. They have a second daughter Talullah Ruth. He is the cousin of New York City socialite Chandler Dash and actress Stacey Dash. Dash dated R&B singer Aaliyah until her death in August 2001. Dash is working to launch his CEO Clothing line but it has not been seen by the public. The clothing line was featured in a magic trade show in Las Vegas. He has been listed as one of hip hops 10 biggest moguls. Also Dash has launched a social network website called BlockSavvy. His accountant has led Dash to being 2 million dollars in debt to the government in back taxes, which led to be false. Dash said he's been paying taxes all his life. Dash has been talking about being the next president of record label Def Jam.
Damon Dash and wife Rachel Roy have signed a joint venture deal with Jones Apparel Group Inc to develop, market and license the New York-based fashion brand. Rachel Roy Is a vegetarian.
Reports in August 2008 said two of Damon Dash's homes in Manhattan had begun foreclosure proceedings. Dash and his wife owe $7.3 million on the two properties, according to court filings, and foreclosure proceedings have begun. Eastern Savings Bank, who holds the mortgages, says the couple's monthly mortgage payments are $78,500, which they apparently have been making.
DASH LAUNCHES PRO-KEDS APPAREL; SNEAKER BRAND'S APPAREL OFFSHOOT WILL HIT RETAIL THIS FALL.(Damon Dash Enterprises signs licensing deal with Stride Rite Corp.)
May 21, 2007; Byline: Jessica Pallay NEW YORK - Young men will be able to match their favorite PRO-Keds sneakers to hoodies and T-shirts this...
JUST DASHING; DAMON DASH TALKS ABOUT TASTEMAKERS, THE RESPECT FOR THE URBAN DOLLAR -- AND WHY RALPH LAUREN IS ALMOST AS GOOD AS HE IS.(Pro-Keds)(Interview)
Apr 18, 2005; Byline: Jennifer Carofano On the 39th floor of his headquarters in the heart of Manhattan, Damon Dash sits on top of the world....
The Man Who Bling ; Damon Dash Has a Butler, a Chef, a Glasss-Roofed Limo.And a Lot of Time on His Hands. Eric Konigsherg Glimpses the Existential Angst of the Hip-Hop Mogul Who Sold Up after His Every Diamond-Encrusted Dream Had Come True
Jul 09, 2006; In the business of hip hop, diversification is the name of the game, and Damon Dash owns a record label, five clothing and shoe...