Rap is a genre known for its conflicts over the years; the infamous Biggie and 2pac rivalry, Ja Rule and 50, the great Nas/Jay-Z feud, etc. Rap is known for the animosity that can exist, but rap has been starved of a true conflict for a while. Yes, Drake went after Meek Mill for a tweet, and some rappers have proceeded to feud with old enemies in the past, but those dissipated quickly or ended with one song. Even the Drake/Meek Mill feud started over Meek tweeting something that turned out to be true. Now? We have a legitimate rap feud that we have not seen in a long time; Pusha-T and Drake.
For those who do not know, these two rappers began to feud following the release of Pusha's album "Daytona," which contained the track Infrared. The track went after Drake (and others), so Drake dropped two songs; Duppy and I'm Upset. While one was good, the other was... meh. Drake attacked Pusha's music, alleged drug dealing, and name-dropped his fiancée. Then? Pusha responded with "The Life of Adidon," where Pusha made MANY claims regarding Drake being in absentia, going after one of his producers, etc. It is what rap needed.
The genre NEEDED beef of this magnitude. Rap was built on the backs of rappers that were intrepid and bold, not afraid to take on anyone they see as competition or disrespecting their name. This was seen with Nas and Jay-Z, Biggie and Pac, and can definitely be seen now in just how upfront Pusha is about the animosity. There were no limits for either song. Despite being petty at times, fans love a feud; it gives them a chance to represent their favorite artist, which has boosted album sales in the past.
Furthermore, this gives us some insight into how artists may view one another; Drake, for example, also took shots at Kanye in his song, stating that he essentially helped ghostwrite some songs and that he was stunned that he had to do anything of that level to assist Kanye. Pusha CLEARLY does not respect Drake. They provide us with insight into rapper emotions and thoughts. Plus, some quick freestyle disses are always fun, especially ones where both parties appear to be so angry and hostile to one another.
Another thing; this is pop rap's undisputed king. And he got attacked mercilessly twice. He went after his attitude, his production team, his ghostwriters, his father... He even has cover art of Drake posing as the Sambo caricature, which apparently is real (!!!). Proper context or not, all of this will combine to sting Drake HARD. Social media loves stuff like this because it can be easily disseminated. None of it looks good.
At the end of the day, rap beef is fun. Social media has made it more fun, since this information can be disseminated rather rapidly. This is the perfect feud; a guy at the peak of his fame versus a guy who, while being talented, has never gotten as much love. A guy with the lyrical ability and audacity to go after one of pop's heavy hitters. Watch this space, since this might just evolve into a war.
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