How do you end an incredible year for rap music? By talking about beef.
Rap beefs in 2017 ran the gamut from hilarity to curiosity. Remy Ma came out of nowhere with “ShETHER,” challenging Nicki Minaj and her status in the game. Young Dolph and Yo Gotti, two Memphis heavyweights, have moved past their beef and thankfully so; it escalated to Dolph getting shot earlier this year. And for East Coast rap heads, the idea of Cam’ron and Mase exchanging diss tracks in 2017 is a dream match-up come true.
More recently, there have been tensions brewing between former friends XXXTentacion and Ski Mask the Slump God. Azealia Banks is always out here doing the most on social media and reigniting beefs. Then there’s Drake and Meek Mill, but the 6 God decided to officially end their feud in a freestyle over Jay-Z’s “Family Feud.” Just when you think the year will start off calm and friendly, rappers always seem to have something to settle.
So, which one was your favorite? We asked New Yorkers to tell us theirs and you’ll be surprised to hear some of their answers.
Nicki Minaj posted a pretty nondescript screen capture of the iTunes top 10 charting Hip Hop/Rap songs Saturday night. But it wasn’t the chart itself that got people talking so much as Nicki’s commentary on the melanin deficiency of the artists on the chart.
“It’s a great time to be a white rapper in America huh?” Nicki wrote in the caption of her now-deleted post. “These are the top 10 rap songs on US iTunes. S/O to Em & Post. Two of my faves. Congrats to Em on his new album. #Motorsport put dat thing in sport.”
The chart has since been updated, but you can pretty easily read between the lines and see what Nicki was referencing. Of the 10 songs listed, Migos’ “Motorsport” and N.E.R.D.’s “Lemon” are the only two performed by artists that self-identify as black.
Nicki wasn’t saying anything that hasn’t already been said about race in rap (or other genres perceived as predominately black) by the likes of Solange, Azealia Banks or even Eminem himself. Defending Post Malone in such a discussion seemed like a curious choice.
It’s possible Nicki considered an Instagram caption wasn’t the best place to try and have a nuanced discussion about race, privilege and music because she ended up updating her caption.
“Update blocking all u sensitive dick riders,” Nicki further wrote. “It IS a great time to be a white rapper in America. I wanna sign one for my new label. U know anyone? I spk my mthafkn mind n if u don’t like it gtfo my page dick rida! Y’all can never wait to ride the Queen dick! Sensitive ass ig thugs. Gtfoh.”
A post shared by The Shade Room (@theshaderoom) on Dec 16, 2017 at 7:11pm PST
That post was followed by a clip of J. Cole’s 2014 interview with Angie Martinez, where Cole also discussed the perception versus reality of genres of music traditionally performed by black artists.
“Whenever a black woman speaks on ANYTHING she’s labeled as “mad” “angry” “bitter,” Nicki wrote in a similarly lengthy caption. “I’m on 4 songs on the Billboard Hot 100. I’m blessed & highly favored thx to my amazing fans.”
Before the posts were deleted, Nicki captioned that she was posting “on new developments within the music industry.” There’s plenty of historical context and data to disprove the theory of white artists gaining increased popularity in predominately black spaces isn’t a new development, but that’s somewhat of a moot point now because Nicki’s posts have been deleted.
Roughly a month after she sent a message to Nicki Minaj apologizing for previously said (but unspecific) “catty shit,”Azealia Banks wrote a message of support for Minaj following an Instagram screenshot journalist and Rap Radar founder/CEO Elliott Wilson posted that was an implied endorsement of its contents. You be the judge:
UPDATED 11:20 p.m. ET: Cardi responded to Azealia Banks' criticisms with a pointed tweet. She shared a short video of Banks singing along to “Bodak Yellow” in a crowded club. To go along with the clip, Cardi wrote, “One of the reasons Bodak Yellow went #1 cuz even the HATERS LOVE IT !!”
Banks struck back with a vicious social media message of her own, accusing Cardi of using a ghostwriter. “Great songwriting,” she wrote. “Might get the nigga to write for me too!”
Banks also included an audio message naming the person who she says wrote “Bodak Yellow.” “We know the nigga from Harlem who wrote the song,” she said. “His name is Cole. He's friends with your boyfriend from jail… Everybody in the hood knows you fuck for raps… A bum bitch from the Bronx like you, it's great that you made it. I'm sure it inspired a lot of other bum bitches.”
You can see and hear Banks' message for yourself below.
Anyway, Azealia went on to say that white men in the industry are deliberately trying to “buy black men away from black women” and claimed Cardi is only considered as black when it's convenient for a success story. And then, she capped the rant off with a particularly offensive statement: “I wanted spicy Latina and she gave me poor mans nicki.”
One: at this point, it's just lazy to keep comparing Cardi to Nicki. They're both over it, and it's a tired analysis. Two: there's nothing wrong with being mixed race. There's nothing wrong with being Latina. There's nothing wrong with a mixed-race or Latina rapper being successful.
Regardless of whether Cardi caught wind of this or not, she seems to be just fine. On Monday, when “Bodak Yellow” officially reached the top of the charts, she tweeted this:
This is the happiest day of my life and no 1 will take this joy from me .I wish you sour patches a good day !Thats how happy I am .
The truce may have come to fruition after Iggy extended an olive branch to Banks via a lengthy message posted on Snapchat. “I just want to say FYI, re: A. Banks. Call me crazy but girl, I don’t hate you. I don’t know you to hate you,” she wrote. “I believe you may want to meet me in person so you can steal a lock of my hair and cast a spell hoping I die (lol) I don’t agree with many of your opinions but honestly, at times I empathize with you as a creative Gemini woman. I wish you had spoken to me before deciding I was out to get you when we first came on the scene, but that’s also typical Gemini reaction shit (I get it). As a 27 year old adult woman just know: I wish you well from one human to another and joke collaboration or not as adults we should move past trivial beef with strangers.” Azalea also posted a video, expressing a desire to speak with Azealia and “at least come to an understanding.”
In an interview with XXL, Azealia seemed open to the idea of talking with Iggy, leaving the door open for both sides to squash their beef. “I think a true reconciliation can happen once there is some acknowledgment of what hip-hop has been trying to tell her. I still don’t think she quite understands the effect her racial privilege and the socio-economic leverage that comes with it has on a marginalized group of women’s culture. Race aside, this is also a women’s issue. I hope that there will be a chance for us to have an open discussion about this, as I feel America and the world could really benefit from some candid discourse between two public figures about the world’s biggest sickness: racism. I wish for women of the future to be able to refer to this moment in women’s culture as an example of what can happen when people take time to understand.”
On Friday, Banks posted a note on Instagram where she listed off a number of requests, which includes releasing “this Iggy collab.”
An arrest warrant has been issued for the controversial rapper and alleged boob-biter Azealia Banks.
According toPitchfork, the 25-year-old artist failed to appear in court Monday to face charges of misdemeanor assault, attempted assault, and disorderly conduct. The charges stem from a 2015 incident, in which Banks allegedly punched and bit the breast of a nightclub security guard after she was prohibited from entering a private party at NYC’s Up&Down.
Page Six reports Banks’ lawyer read a note written by the rapper in court Monday: “I can be back tomorrow if the court needs it.”
An entertainment attorney representing Banks has since released a statement explaining why his client was unable to make her scheduled court appearance. Apparently, Banks had confused the dates and was unable to appear because she was in Europe.
Azealia Banks mistakenly believed she had a court appearance on March 8 instead of March 6.
She was in France for Fashion week due to meetings and other social gatherings and was not able to arrange her flight in time to appear today. She apologizes and will apologize in person to the Court for missing her scheduled hearing. In addition, she attempted to appear via a New York Attorney and through a close family member. Ms. Banks will go to the department to remedy the situation as soon as possible. Again, she apologizes for the inconvenience that may have caused the Department.
Shortly before the altercation at Up&Down, Banks was caught on surveillance allegedly attacking another security guard at a nightclub in Los Angeles. The footage—obtained by TMZ—shows a bouncer attempting to remove Banks from the Break Room 86 venue, before a scuffle breaks out. Though the LAPD reportedly opened a criminal battery investigation, Banks ultimately dodged assault charges, as the L.A. City Attorney determined the footage failed to provide enough evidence.