By Sumit Sharma.
The new year has started with a bang in the world of Hip-Hop. It’s not even February and we have a beef to kick off the year.
Following the release of his sophomore effort “Take Care”, Drake has been brushing off jabs from legends, notably from Common.
The Chicago native released his album late last year. “The Dreamer / The Believer” is a solid effort from the rapper even though the sales won’t reflect that. But that wasn’t what was causing the controversy; the first single off the project did all that.
When Common released “Sweet”, Rap fans couldn’t help but ask themselves why Common was going at Drake even though he mentioned no names.
“Some ho*s a** ni**as / Singing all around me man, la la la / You aint muthaf*cking Frank Sinatra” - Common – “Sweet”
In an interview with V103 in Atlanta, Common initally said he liked Drake’s music but did not confirm the bars were directed to him.
“Some people have been saying that, but on that song, I’m just talking about whoever the cap fits. I’m talking about rappers out there that’s soft and doing the same thing. So if the cap fits, then that’s who it is”. That’s all it is. It’s whoever the cap fits, then let ‘em wear it. I think it’s a lot of creative artists out there. I think Drake makes some good music.”
The situation escalated when Drizzy said during one of his concerts; “I might sing, but I ain’t no bitch. If Common got something to say, say it to my face.”
If The Shoe Fits
In the run up to the release of his album, Common went on the Sway In The Morning Show to confirm that he is going at Drake.
Fast forward to the release of Rick Ross’ “Rich Forever” Mixtape (insert Maybach Music drop here), Drake had a tough verse on a track called “Stay Schemin”.
It was very Jay-Z esque. Without mentioning Chi-town’s finest, it was clear that Drizzy was responding to Common.
“It bothers me when the gods get to acting like the broads / Guess every team doesn’t come complete with ni**as like ours / That’s why I see no need to compete with ni**as like y’all / I just ask that when you see me you speak up ni**as that’s all / Don’t be ducking like you never wanted nothing / It’s feeling like rap change / There was a time it was rugged / Back when if a ni**a reached it was for the weapon / Nowadays ni**as reach, just to sell they record” - Drake – Stay Schemin
In true Hip Hop fashion, Common retaliated going hard at October’s Very Own on his own track.
“Everybody know you sweet, what the problem is / Don’t play dumb, I’m the one that acknowledged it /You so black and white, tryna to live a nigga’s life / I’m taking too long with this amateur guy / You ain’t wet nobody, nigga, you Canada dry” - Common – Stay Schemin Freestyle
Personally it’s refreshing to have a battle on our hands that doesn’t involve either 50 Cent or The Game who’d end up dissing Jay-Z for no reason….AGAIN!
Emo vs. Real Rap
What is interesting about this particular beef is that it represents a wider battle in Hip Hop.
In one corner we have Drake who is flying the flag of Emo Rap which is on the rise with his female-friendly tracks. In the other corner, we have the master of ceremonies in Common, who represents “real Hip Hop”.
Unfortunately this is the battle Hip Hop is going through every day. Log on to social networks and all you’ll see hoards of fans debating whether Emo Rap is feminine while calling street rap “that real Hip Hop”.
For me, we are under the same umbrella but the potential of this battle could see fans taking sides depending on the style of Rap they prefer. Do you prefer the female-friendly sounds of Drizzy or the raw sound of Common?
Old Vs. New
This battle also represents the old vs. the new. Common is a veteran of the game however times have now changed because we have the leader of the new cool in Drake. He makes songs for the ladies but the fellas respect him too. He makes good music and definately has the potential to have a long career in this game.
Already I’ve seen fans take sides just because they are fans of either old or new school Rap.
Regardless of what side you are on, it is good for the culture because we are getting back to the essence.
Don’t get me wrong this “beef” isn’t anywhere near the level of KRS-One vs. Shan, Kool Moe Dee vs. LL or even Ice Cube vs. Common, but this could divide fans. Drake would need to respond DIRECTLY at Common for that to happen.
Only time will tell…