Maybe Rap Beef isn’t DEAD! – Thanks Cudi! Thanks Cocaine!

Let’s make this clear…I’m not one of those people who don’t think rap beef has a place in the game anymore. I want it to come back. I LOVE IT!

This, in case you young dumb fucks don’t know, is what built Hip-Hop into the force that it is now. It’s a thing called competition.

It’s behind the inception of the careers of some of your favorites, and some of the greats. KRS owes his career to it, so does Salt-N-Pepa. Didn’t Freeway come in handling beef for Jay and Beanie during the introduction of the State Property camp? I can go on with the list of who’s made a career of and from battling, but you busters probably should just go back and pick up some copies of Wildstyle and the Beef series.

As I pointed out in last month’s article about Jeezy goin at Officer Rozay, somewhere along the lines, the progenitors of the new millenium killed the art form of battle-rap by just over-doing it. It’s no longer special to call someone out or hear a challenge of who’s better. People have mis-used and abused this secret weapon…Creating false beefs, taking subliminals, building anti-climactic conclusions and just looking emotional. Which brings us to the second reason why beef appears to have died in the last 7 years; The image. The Status Quo has changed dramatically, to the point where wasting your breath to respond or show even the slightest twinge of concern at someone taking shots at your character makes one appear less composed or tough. It’s far cooler now to lend a half a bar towards an antagonist than to go in on them and dedicate a whole song or verse aimed at a particular wayward soul who dares detract from fandom. That would be too much of an investment into them. The majority of us have adopted this snobbish approach in rap, feeling as tho silence is the best retaliation. True enough, this works better in real life, where I wish more niggas would actually put this into practice, but not in rap where the whole premise is bravado.

The third reason would be that 2 of the most prolific and prominent figures in rap music history have died over what seemingly stemmed from a beef. This put to bed how far heads wanted to go with verbally assaulting one another on record and things have never been quite the same since…It would seem niggas would rather air out their grievances with a good gun fight and recording disses that would just leave things artistically settled has become lame. All I know is that somebody’s gonna have to shoot me cause I don’t plan on biting my tongue if I’m not rocking with someone.

Having that said, maybe it was a blessing in disguise that this code of silence has lingered for the past few years. With the exception of the random and desperate jabs made by 50, there has been no major rap beef worth noting in a long time. But some barbs being traded recently have been pointing towards a state of unrest within the game that needs to manifest itself through a good contest of words to bring the balance back. I knew everybody in the biz couldn’t all be buddies like they were trying to have us believe.

The most vivid of these new shots flying has come from Wale and another dude who’s popular like Rozay but makes me wonder if I’m in the Twilight Zone, Kid Cudi – everyone’s favorite druggie. Apparently, amidst revealing his drug habit, news spread this weekend via his interview with Complex mag (Read more on it at this link at refinedhype.com http://www.refinedhype.com/hyped/entry/kid-cudi-fires-shots/ ) that quoted him making statements about Wale being a “Silly-ass rapper” and not being able to fuck with him musically because he’s been too nice and laid back towards his haters. I wasn’t even aware that Cudi has haters since everywhere I go it seems that his fans are at stan levels about his weird mood music. He’s just a muthafucka I don’t get and don’t wanna get. Only people I hear bigging him up are weed-heads or worse. You shouldn’t have to be on a hallucinogen to enjoy someone’s music. On another note, weren’t these 2 guys BOYS just a second ago??? I recall reading through XXL‘s 2nd Freshman Class issue, and these guys were all off to their own corner during the whole thing, high-fiving each other. Also, why is this guy still being labeled as a hip-hop artist? He clearly just drones through most of his songs which are usually over trippy hybrid sonic-beds. So he has YET to release a song to the commercial public where he str8 raps, but Drake gets crucified for ‘singing too much‘ when he raps his heart out everytime he does spit and he made it clear that he sings and raps from the gate. Cudi claims hip-hop and makes quite the opposite. Even his demeanor and slant is in a rock-ish electro – pop direction. But alas, tho I could obviously care less about Mr. Rager’s career and his drug habit, I do know potential for a good beef when I see it brewing. His place as a beloved mainstream outcast and underground darling makes him a luminary that garners attention, and being that Wale is a contemporary of his, albeit a less successful one, it does seem to be a beef that wouldn’t go quietly if pursued. And for that and that alone, I thank Cudi, for giving me some hope that there might be a rap battle worth anticipating in the near future. Maybe Wale can get this guy to actually be mad enough to rap and show us all how truly wack he is when he’s not putting us in a trance. Cheers!

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3 Comments

  1. First of all Mr. 16, stoners floaters and droppers all need their music just like jerkers and hip-hop purists and country bois from that dirty. Though I do admit Cudi has some stuff that borders electronika, I think overall that type of thing is good for streching the borders of what hip-hop has morphed itself into. And, just like you, I don’t like all of what has blossomed from our humble beginnings at 1520 Sedgewick Ave… but like Jill Scott says “everything ain’t for everybody…”
    And, I think that the last really epic, non-violent confrontation which allowed all the fans to enjoy the competition aspect of the musical expression we’ve dubbed our own was Nas and Jay… of course even you can remember the debates about this one. Shit, you has them with me! (You probably remember me telling Nas was gone get in dat ass when everybody was bump riding Jigga for “Takeover”….. that is until Ether came out and became synonymous like lyrical beat downs)
    But I think that now adays, we won’t say that the music has gotten more violent by itself, but it has come to reflect the climate of the times as always. A lot of these dudes are scared of lyrical combat for a number of reasons. Some aren’t prepared. Some are scared of taking a licking, thinking their careers won’t survive. And some are scared to have to stand on their ten toes and back up the words they say, cause like I said, society is now cranked to ultra-violent (and we can no longer blame Mortal Kombat or rap). These young kids don’t remember America NOT being in IRAQ, ‘nahmean?
    In closing, I’m looking forward to a nice back and forth as long as dudes are able to keep it non-fatal. I mean, you want to knock his teeth out go ahead if you feel like it. You lose, then take your L home with you. But take it HOME. And i ain’t no anti-gun advocate, but pistols don’t’ usually solve problems in entertainment situations (at least not real ones: dirty harry and the terminator eliminate problems with large calibers without prejudice…. where are their protestors?!)

    HOTEP

  2. Aw Shit nigga you gone make me go get a blog now…. I’m looking at the shit I write in comparison to the length of the shit you write and thinking I could do this. Now if I could only find time….

  3. Yeah, you can definitely do it son! Look how much time you find to comment on my shit – even tho you never respond to my responses.

    But speaking of which, I give a fuck about what stoners and floaters wanna hear. They can get high to anything anyway. Why are whole albums being dedicated to that shit now?? Even Devin The Dude took a break to talk about real shit.
    And Cudi’s style has nothing to do with the evolution of hip-hop from it’s origins. Look how many styles are out there now. Hip-Hop is more diverse than ever really. It’s not about making room for versatility. It’s that this nigga actually doesn’t RAP. Like AT ALL! This is electronica and emo-pop music that he makes. It’s like calling Arrested Development or Linkin Park hip-hop just because they have hip-hop sensibilities. As a matter of fact, Mike Shinoda from Linkin Park actually DOES rap more than Cudi does!!!! If Cudi was not included in the ranks of guys who really engage in our art form, who actually sit down and weave lyrics around rhetorical devices and rhyme schemes like Wale, and Asher Roth and Even Drake who sings but always manages to unmistakebly rap just as much as he croons, and was given his own lane or put in his appropriate space, then I’d have NO problem with him. He can do all the coke he wants and make catchy moody ditties about being a lonely smoker for the rest of his life! But to be constantly put up there as the face of rap, and mentioned in the same breath as his label mates, Kanye, Big Sean and the legend Common, and then to have an ego about it and think he can rip, Is a slap in the face of the game! What’s worse is that dude doesn’t even sing or rap. It’s just melodious mumbling. I’m just sick of being in the fucking Twilight zone. This is the definiton of “Nice” now?? Cudi? Ross? Wiz? Currensy?Gudda?Diggy Simmons?
    Where am I? The heads we pick at and the heads we give a pass are all backwards.

    And don’t start me on that 20 year old half-baked excuse about movie violence. Clint Eastwood and Arnold weren’t jumping off the screen before, after or during the movie making 2 minute long skits and adlibs about they really are Dirty Harry and the Terminator and they really do this!!! They weren’t screaming all over the film where to find them and how real the movie is cause they’ll really do this!!! They weren’t Telling you to see them in the streets so they can show you how real their characters were cause they really do this!!! Actors separate themselves from their characters so realistically and immediately that it’s known even by kids that the person in the movie isn’t the person at the red carpet premier. They know Hugh Jackman’s happy ass ain’t Wolverine. If only rappers did this, then maybe that “it’s just entertainment’ alibi could be believable. If so, then Ross would’ve never felt compelled to lie about being a C.O. How many times have we had to hear your favorite rappers stop the track to tell you that it’s not just a record and they really do this!!??

    Kids take that shit in when you’re the coolest thing out.
    Fuck rappers.


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