OVO Sound

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OVO Sound
OVO Sound.png
Parent companyWarner Music Group
Founded2012; 7 years ago (2012)
Noah “40” Shebib
Oliver El-Khatib
Distributor(s)Warner Bros. Records
(In the US)
WEA International
GenreHip hop
Official websitewww.ovosound.com

OVO Sound is a Toronto-based Canadian record label founded by hip hop artist Drake, Oliver El-Khatib, and long-time producer Noah "40" Shebib in 2012.[1] It operates as a subsidiary of, and is distributed through, Warner Music Group's Warner Bros. Records.

The label has acts including Drake, PARTYNEXTDOOR, Majid Jordan, OB O'Brien, Roy Woods, and dvsn, as well as in-house producers 40, Boi-1da, T-Minus, Mike Zombie, Nineteen85, Future the Prince and Popcaan.[2]


Drake founded the label in 2012

The label's roots can be traced back to 2006, where Drake's first official mixtape, Room for Improvement, was released under the unofficial record label, "All Things Fresh" which eventually became "October's Very Own". This was due to Drake's standing as an unsigned artist at the time, with subsequent releases published under the "October's Very Own" moniker. Drake would then raise the profile of the label by prominently featuring OVO throughout his music, regularly mentioning the label in songs, on stage as well as the distribution of OVO merchandise.

The record label was then officially founded in 2012, by Drake and long-time producer, Noah "40" Shebib, showing to the huge success of Drake's third studio album Nothing Was the Same. According to Billboard, Drake shortly signed a partnership deal with Warner Bros. Records with the label, in a deal similar to Rick Ross' to the record company. As Ross is signed as a solo artist to Epic, the artists on Ross' Maybach Music Group label are signed to Atlantic Records, former partners with Warner. Drake will still be signed as a solo artist to Republic Records through Young Money/Cash Money, but the artists he signs to OVO Sound will have their content distributed through Warner.[3][4]

Upon founding the label in 2012, Drake and 40 signed frequent collaborators Boi-1da, T-Minus, and later Mike Zombie (thus far the only signee to come outside of Canada) to the label as in-house producers.[5] In April 2013, it was reported that Drake was close to signing the label's first recording artist, PARTYNEXTDOOR, which he ended up revealing shortly thereafter.[6] In August 2013, Drake announced that he signed Toronto music duo Majid Jordan to OVO Sound.[7] OB O'Brien and iLoveMakonnen would soon sign in 2014, with the latter being the first non-Canadian act and second non-Canadian signee next to Mike Zombie. Makonnen would eventually leave OVO Sound in April 2016, wishing to pursue interest in sticking solely with Warner. Canadian rap artist Roy Woods, and R&B duo dvsn soon joined the label in 2015 and 2016, releasing an EP and studio album respectively. [8][9][10][11]


Current acts[edit]

Act Year Releases
Drake 2012 5
OB O'Brien 2013 0
Majid Jordan 2013 2
Roy Woods 2015 3
dvsn 2016 2
Plaza 2017 1
Baka Not Nice 2017 1
Popcaan[12] 2019 0

Former Acts[edit]

Act Year Releases
iLoveMakonnen 2015 4

In-house producers[edit]

Act Year
Noah "40" Shebib 2012
Boi-1da[13] 2012
T-Minus[14] 2012
Mike Zombie[15][16][17] 2013
Nineteen85 2013
Future the Prince[18] 2015

OVO committee[edit]

OVO Fest[edit]

OVO Fest is an annual concert hosted by Drake in Toronto that began in 2010. It's held on the Civic Holiday weekend in the city, which coincides with the Caribana festival. OVO Fest is notable for the special guests that perform at the concert. Multi-platinum artists such as Eminem, Jay Z, Kanye West, Lil Wayne and Nas are frequent performers, as well as artists who used the concert as a platform to gain future success, including J. Cole, The Weeknd, A$AP Rocky and Kendrick Lamar.[19][20][21][22][23][24][25][26]

OVO Sound Radio[edit]

OVO Sound Radio is a radio program that airs on Beats 1, fortnightly on Saturdays. The show primarily airs newer material, with at least one song premiering in each broadcast. The show's initial airing was on July 11, 2015, and it was hosted by Drake and Oliver El-Khatib. The show is notable for debuting hit Drake singles, such as platinum-selling Hotline Bling, Grammy nominated Back to Back, and chart-topping One Dance.

OVO Clothing[edit]

OVO Clothing was launched in 2011.[27] The series of clothing began with a series of collaborations between Roots Canada and OVO, which produced several parkas, jackets and other collaborations. In 2013, merchandise for the OVO figurehead included collaborations with the Toronto Raptors, which coincided with Drake becoming the franchise's Global Ambassador. OVO has since morphed into a clothing line in itself, releasing a slew of clothes during every season of the year. T-shirts, sweatshirts, varsity jackets, baseball hats, and knit beanies are seasonal installations. OVO Clothing oversaw the opening of a flagship store for the brand's clothing in downtown Toronto, opening in December 6, 2014. Exactly a year after the opening in Toronto, OVO stores expanded to the United States, opening a flagship store in Los Angeles, California. Its New York store opened in December 2016 on Bond Street. Other collaborations with OVO have included Canada Goose, and Air Jordan.

Its pre-2016 collection was composed of basketball shorts, OVO jerseys, track jackets, and baggy hoodies.[28]


Studio albums[edit]

Artist Album Details
Drake Nothing Was the Same
  • Released: July 28, 2014
  • Chart positions: #15 U.S.
  • RIAA certification: uncertified
Majid Jordan Majid Jordan
  • Released: February 5, 2016
  • Chart positions: #69 U.S.
  • RIAA certification: uncertified
dvsn Sept. 5th
  • Released: March 27, 2016
  • Chart positions: #133 U.S.
  • RIAA certification: uncertified
Roy Woods Waking at Dawn
  • Released: July 1, 2016
  • Chart positions: #127 U.S.
  • RIAA certification: uncertified
  • Released: August 12, 2016
  • Chart positions: #3 U.S.
  • RIAA certification: uncertified


Artist Mixtape Details
Drake If You're Reading This It's Too Late
iLoveMakonnen Drink More Water 5
  • Released: March 31, 2015
  • Chart positions: uncharted
  • RIAA certification: uncertified
Drake & Future What a Time to Be Alive
  • Released: September 20, 2015
  • Chart positions: #1 U.S.
  • RIAA certification: Platinum
iLoveMakonnen & Rich The Kid [29] Whip It
  • Released: November 26, 2015
  • Chart positions: uncharted
  • RIAA certification: uncharted


Artist Mixtape Details
Majid Jordan A Place Like This
  • Released: July 17, 2014
  • Chart position: uncharted
  • RIAA certification: uncertified
  • Released: December 3, 2014
  • Chart position: uncharted
  • RIAA certification: uncertified
iLoveMakonnen iLoveMakonnen
  • Released: December 15, 2014
  • Chart position: uncharted
  • RIAA certification: uncertified
Roy Woods Exis
  • Released: July 31, 2015
  • Chart position: uncharted
  • RIAA certification: uncertified
iLoveMakonnen iLoveMakonnen 2
  • Released: November 20, 2015
  • Chart position: uncharted
  • RIAA certification: uncertified
Roy Woods Nocturnal
  • Released: December 21, 2016
  • Chart position: uncharted
  • RIAA certification: uncertified


  1. ^ "Drake's OVO Sound Label Teams Up With City of Toronto to Create Music Committee". Retrieved August 11, 2016.
  2. ^ "Drake Signs Popcaan To OVO". HotNewHipHop.com. 23 December 2018.
  3. ^ "Drake's OVO Label Flies To Warner Bros. Records - Music, Celebrity, Artist News". MTV.com. 2012-12-05. Retrieved 2013-05-07.
  4. ^ Ugwu, Reggie. "Drake's OVO Record Label Inks Deal With Warner Bros. | News". BET. Retrieved 2013-05-07.
  5. ^ "10 Artists That Should Sign To Drake's OVO Sound - Page 7 of 11 - XXL". Xxlmag.com. 2013-08-12. Retrieved 2013-08-25.
  6. ^ "Listen to PARTYNEXTDOOR, Drake's New Artist Signing to OVO (Soon) - XXL". Xxlmag.com. 2013-04-22. Retrieved 2013-05-07.
  7. ^ "Drake Wants New Single To Be Played At Weddings". XXL.
  8. ^ On June 10th 2017, newest signee Plaza's project, Shadow EP, debuted on OVO Sound Radio episode 45. Gilmore, Mike (August 7, 1997). "Puff Daddy Cometh". Rolling Stone. Jann Wenner. Archived from the original on October 2, 2007. Retrieved May 16, 2012.
  9. ^ Carissimo, Justin (24 October 2016). "Drake announces 'More Life' project, shares four new songs on OVO Sound Radio". The Independent. Retrieved 24 October 2016.
  10. ^ Morgan Britton, Luke (24 October 2016). "Stream three new Drake songs from 'More Life' project". NME. Retrieved 24 October 2016.
  11. ^ Willis, Jay (24 October 2016). "Drake Just Dropped Four New Songs Off More Life as an Early Birthday Gift". GQ. Retrieved 24 October 2016.
  12. ^ "Drake Signs Popcaan To OVO". HotNewHipHop.com. 23 December 2018.
  13. ^ Boi-1da Shares Stories Behind Drake's "Started From The Bottom" | Rappers Talk Hip Hop Beef & Old School Hip Hop | HipHop DX
  14. ^ PartyNextDoor – PartyNextDoor | SOHH.com | 5 Reasons
  15. ^ "5 Things We Learned From Drake's "Started From The Bottom"". February 8, 2013. Retrieved August 11, 2016.
  16. ^ OVO Producer Mike Zombie Chats With Fans About Drake's Style, Advice from 40 | HHU | thehiphopupdate.com
  17. ^ "Listen: Drake f/ Majid Jordan "Hold On We're Going Home" (Prod. by Nineteen85)". Retrieved August 11, 2016.
  18. ^ Nostro, Lauren. "A Guide to Who's Who in OVO". Complex. Retrieved 19 October 2014.
  19. ^ "Eminem and Jay-Z join Drake onstage". 2010-08-02.
  20. ^ "Drake's OVO Fest Highlights feat. Jay-Z, Eminem, Young Jeezy and more (photos/video)". MissInfo.tv. 2010-08-02. Retrieved 2013-05-07.
  21. ^ "Drake's OVOFest 2011 With Lil' Wayne, Stevie Wonder, Nas, J.Cole, Rick Ross, and The Weeknd (Video)". MissInfo.tv. 2011-08-01. Retrieved 2013-05-07.
  22. ^ "OVO Fest 2012: Drake Shows Toronto Love with Rick Ross, Nicki Minaj & More". Billboard. Retrieved 2013-05-07.
  23. ^ "Drake Announces 4th Annual OVO Fest Lineup". Retrieved August 11, 2016.
  24. ^ "Drake Just Announced That Wale Will Be Performing at OVO Fest". Retrieved August 11, 2016.
  25. ^ "Drake Is Bringing Out Everyone At OVO Fest Tonight". Retrieved August 11, 2016.
  26. ^ "Drake Brings Out Kanye West For OVO Fest". Retrieved August 11, 2016.
  27. ^ "How the OVO Clothing Label Evolved With Drake's Career". Retrieved August 11, 2016.
  28. ^ Rooney, Kyle (August 10, 2016). "OVO Apparel Line Pre-fall collection". Hotnewhiphop. Retrieved August 10, 2016.
  29. ^ CLOSE (2015-11-26). "Rich The Kid & iLoveMakonnen - Whip It | Stream [New Mixtape]". Hotnewhiphop.com. Retrieved 2017-06-07.

External links[edit]