Drake is unquestionably the hottest rapper in the game right now. Everything he does seems to turn to gold or in most cases, platinum. Even though many were disappointed with his latest album Views, most people still agree that the album is good. Recently, Joe Budden criticized Drake’s latest offering, calling him “uninspired.” Drake reacted in classic Drake fashion by throwing some subliminal jabs at Joe on “4pm in Calabasas.” Joe didn’t seem to take these jabs lightly as he came back with a full fledged 6-minute diss track ripping into Drake. Although the bars were lyrically very clever and some of them were pretty hard-hitting, the song hasn’t made much of an impact on how hip-hop fans view either Joe or Drake.
We can probably expect Aubrey to throw some more subliminals Joe’s way on his next release, but I don’t expect to see much more than that result from this beef. In order to take down the hottest rapper in the game, you need the ability to make a song good enough to connect with the masses while maintaining sharp lyrical contact. In my opinion there are only three rappers (who have previously had lyrical run-ins with Drake) who are able to take down Drake and make for an interesting hip-hop beef, and Joe Budden is not one of them. So instead of dwelling on the current, and somewhat boring situation, let’s use our imaginations and think of the possible beefs that we would rather see escalate.
3. Pusha T vs. Drake
Drake and Pusha T have had long-standing tension. Pusha’s bars started flowing Drizzy’s way in 2012 when Push and Lil Wayne, Drake’s idol and label-mate, were feuding. On “Exodus 23:1” Pusha mentions that Drake is just a guy signed to a few other guys with the bar: “You signed to one n***a that’s signed to another n***a that’s signed to three n***as now that’s bad luck.” This bar refers to all of the contracts that Drake and Wayne are caught up in under Birdman’s Cash Money imprint.
Drake has potentially responded a couple times subliminally but nothing has been directly shot at Push. OVO Hush who is a part of Drake’s camp claimed that Pusha is always too scared to admit that he is aiming directly at Drake because he knows what Drake could do to him lyrically. Hush posted an Instagram caption with the hashtag “#BacktoBackPhobia.”
I think that Pusha is incredibly clever lyrically, and knows how to deliver hard hitting punchlines. He chooses his beats well, knows how to make a hit song, and has the respect of both his contemporaries and the industry heads. If he ever decides to actually claim his beef with Drake and takes a direct shot, I think it would shake up the hip-hop world and give rap fans a reason to stay on the edge of their seats. We’ll have to see if this ever comes to fruition.
2. Kendrick Lamar vs. Drake
Drake and Kendrick Lamar have been connected as contemporaries within hip-hop since 2011 when Kendrick was given a solo track, Burried Alive Interlude, on Drake’s Grammy award-winning album, Take Care. Drake also took Kendrick on the road with him for his 2012 Club Paradise Tour, and a budding rap friendship seemed to be forming between the two young artists. It wasn’t until Kendrick dropped his infamous “Control” verse that tension started to brew between K. Dot and Drizzy.
After Kendrick called out all of his peers in the rap game by stating, “I got love for you all but I’m tryna murder you n****s // Tryna make sure your core fans never heard of you n****s // They don’t wanna hear not one more noun or verb from you n****s” Drake did not take this shot lightly. He is a competitive artist who’s number one priority has always seemed to be claiming the top spot. On “The Language” off of Nothing Was the Same, Drake shot back by rapping, “I don’t know why they been lying but yo s**t is not that inspiring // Bank account statements just look like I’m ready for early retirement // F**k any n***a that’s talkin’ that s**t just to get a reaction // F**k going platinum, I looked at my wrist and it’s already platinum // I am the kid with the motor mouth // I am the one that you should worry about
// I don’t know who you’re referring to, who is this n***a you heard about?”
Since then, Kendrick has responded on Jay Rock’s song “Pay For It” while Drake referenced “Control” once more on his song “Used To” off of If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late. Kendrick also may have thrown some subliminal lines Drake’s way on Dr. Dre’s Compton album as well as on his new untitled unmastered album.
Currently, all seems to be fine between the two rappers, with Drake giving a shoutout to Kenny on the DJ Khaled summer anthem “For Free,” rapping, “like that boy from Compton say, you know this d**k ain’t free!” As a fan of both of these artists I hope they will continue to be cool and collaborate in the near future, but as a fan of the sport of rapping, deep down I hope they continue to throw some shots at each other. Kendrick is the only other rapper who has been acclaimed to the level of Drake coming out of the new generation. He is loved by the kids and by older hip-hop fans alike, so the social media war that would be bound to happen if the two ever really go at it on records would be pretty even. I think a Kid Compton vs. Kid Canada battle would be an earth shattering moment (at least within the hip-hop world).
1. Jay Z vs. Drake
Jay Z and Drake have been connected since 2009 when Jay put Drake on The Blueprint 3. Then Jay returned the favor by appearing on Drake’s debut album Thank Me Later. The two have collaborated since on “Pound Cake” and (accidentally) on the original version of “Pop Style” but there has always been a weird tension between the two rappers.
In a Rolling Stone interview, Drake stated that Jay rapping about art was “corny.” Later he stated that this portion of the interview was supposed to be off the record. He ended up taking shots at Rolling Stone for releasing the statement. Jay responded on a remix of Drake’s song “We Made It” by spitting, “Sorry Mrs. Drizzy for so much art talk // Silly me, rapping bout s**t that I really bought.”
Drake responded on “Draft Day” by cleverly flipping Jay’s Mrs. Drizzy line and saying, “Just hits, no misses, that’s for the married folk.”
Then, earlier this year Drake rapped on his single, “Summer Sixteen”, “I used to wanna be on Rocafella, then I turned into Jay.” Drake claimed that he is the new Jay Z and compared his position of power within hip-hop to Hov’s hold over the rap game.
Jay Z apparently did not take the comparison as a compliment as he fired right back on DJ Khaled’s new single “I Got The Keys.” Jay raps, ” ‘Til you own your own you can’t be free // ‘Till you’re on your own you can’t be me” and “Real life I’m like Hov // Real life I’m life goals // In real life they’re like me? // In real life I’m like, “No.””
Drake has yet to respond to Jay’s jabs but I think this brewing competition between two of the greats will make for an interesting summer as a rap fan.
In the intro of this article I referred to Drake as the hottest rapper out right now. Jay Z is arguably the hottest rapper of all time. If the two ended up taking direct shots at each other, the internet would go insane. It would be a rap beef that connects two different generations and probably every single rap fan in the world. How could you not love the idea of two of the most popular rappers ever battling it out in a lyrical warfare that would surely be filled with so many double entendres and metaphors that you would have to look them up for hours on end? The answer: if you don’t love rap.
That was just me dreaming for a little bit. Now back to the reality of waiting on a subliminal Drake response to Joe Budden.. * Snoring emoji *
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