Drake’s surprise album was intended to be a free release

'If You’re Reading This It's Too Late' has broken Spotify records

Drake’s recently released surprise album ‘If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late’ was originally planned to be a free download, according to the head of music at mixtape distribution website DatPiff.

In a statement released to HipHopDX.com, Kyle ‘KP’ Reilly revealed that the record was intended to be released as part of DJ Drama’s ‘Gangsta Grillz’ mixtape series but became a paid-for album once Drake’s label, Cash Money Records, became involved.

“Originally we were in talks to release it for free…and have DJ Drama host and even make it an official Gangsta Grillz,” said Reilly.

“However the label was not in favour of that and they struck an agreement to release the project the retail route and it would count towards one of his albums.

“It was a mutual decision since he wanted to give it away. They [the label] said, ‘Hell no,’ not in those words, so they ‘agreed’ to do it this way as a middle ground and it would count towards his Cash Money deal album total. The label had zero input or creative control over ‘If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late’.

“This was about two to three weeks ago when the release plans and label decision was up in the air.”

It’s been widely speculated that Drake released the unannounced record to quickly complete his four-album contract with Cash Money, who are currently involved in a lawsuit with long-time artist and Drake’s mentor, Lil Wayne.

Regardless, the mixtape-come-album has breaking streaming records on Spotify. It was streamed 17.3 million times in three days, going on to break the all-time record for most streams of a release in its debut week.

Incidentally, the record was previously held by Drake himself, with previous album ‘Nothing Was The Same’ being streamed 15.8 million times in its first week.

‘If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late’ also broke the Spotify record for most streams in a single day, achieving 6.8 million streams on February 14.