Pusha T and Drake’s feud has been, for the most part, unremarkable. Pusha has previously been more occupied with Lil Wayne, while Drake has had high profile fights or indirect skirmishes with everyone from Meek Mill to Kendrick Lamar.
However, thanks to the release of Pusha’s new album, Daytona, the feud between Pusha and Drake has reached an all new intensity, both artists releasing diss tracks aimed squarely at each other. But where did their feud begin? Let’s take a brief look at their history of beef.
2006: Clipse versus Lil Wayne
Pusha has feuded with Lil Wayne since 2002, but the first public diss came on the track “Mr. Me Too.” At the time, Pusha was still performing with Clipse, a group composed of himself and his brother No Malice.
The duo were wearing lots of BAPE clothing at the time and when Wayne dressed in BAPE attire on the front cover of Vibe magazine they claimed the rapper copied their style. On “Mr. Me Too,” featuring Pharell, they rapped: ”Wanna know the time? Better clock us / N****s bite the style from the shoes to the watches.”
Wayne responded during an interview with Complex later that year, telling the publication: “You talking to the best. Talk to me like you’re talking to the best. I don’t see no fuckin’ Clipse. Come on man.”
2011: Pusha releases “Don’t Fuck With Me”
How does Lil Wayne and Pusha T fighting over who wore BAPE first relate to Drake? That Wayne beef was, ultimately, a little deeper than a fight over a clothing brand, the pair sparring with each other over the years on various tracks.
So, when Drake joined Wayne’s label Young Money Entertainment the rapper became fair game for Pusha, who first went after Drake on the track “Don’t Fuck with Me,” a song that samples Drake’s own “Dreams Money Can Buy” (which itself samples Jai Paul).
“Rappers on their sophomores / Actin’ like they boss lords / Fame such a funny thing for sure / When n****s start believing all them encores,“ Pusha rapped, alluding to Drake, who released his second album, Take Care, later that year.
2012: “Exodus 23:1”
To clear up any confusion over who the lines were directed at, Pusha released the track “Exodus 23:1,” taking aim at Drake’s difficult contract with Young Money Entertainment, itself an imprint of Cash Money Records.
“Contract all fucked up / I guess that means you all fucked up / You signed to one n***a that signed to another n***a / That’s signed to three n***as / Now that’s bad luck,” he rapped.
Unimpressed by the track, Wayne wrote on Twitter: “Fuk Pusha T and anybody that love em.”
2013: Drake fires back
The following year – after Pusha took another pot shot at Lil Wayne on the track “Your Favourite Rapper” – Drake decided to stand up for himself and his mentor, rapping “Bench players talkin’ like starters / I hate it” on the track “Tuscan Leather” from the album Nothing Was The Same.
Drake also rapped: “I’m just as famous as my mentor / But that’s still the boss, don’t get sent for / Get hype on tracks and jump in front of a bullet you wasn’t meant for.”
2016: Pusha releases “H.G.T.V”
And then came “H.G.T.V”, featuring the hardest hitting verses from Pusha at that time. Referencing Drake’s first album, So Far Gone, and questioning his reported use of ghostwriters – a topic that has been widely mentioned by those who take issue with Drake – Pusha rapped: “It’s too far gone when the realest ain’t real / I walk amongst the clouds so your ceilings ain’t real / These n***as Call of Duty ‘cause their killings ain’t real / With a questionable pen so the feelin’ ain’t real.”
2017: Drake responds with “Two Birds, One Stone”
Drake responded on the More Life track ”Two Birds, One Stone”, calling out Pusha for talking about drug dealing in songs. “But really it’s you with all the drug dealer stories / That’s gotta stop, though / You made a couple chops and now you think you Chapo... You middle-man in this shit, boy you was never them guys / I can tell, ’cause I look most of you dead in your eyes / And you’ll be tryna sell that story for the rest of your lives.”
2018: All hell breaks loose
Pusha released Daytona to critical acclaim and, although just seven tracks long, the rapper manages another dig at his long-standing rival.
On the track “Infrared”, Pusha compares the way Drake became popular to the way Donald Trump became president, pointing out how both allegedly used external measures: Drake uses a ghostwriter named Quentin Miller while Trump has alleged ties to Russia under investigation.
Pusha raps: “The lyric pennin’ equal the Trumps winnin’ / The bigger question is how the Russians did it / It was written like Nas but it came from Quentin”.
Many were expecting the Canadian to respond on his upcoming album, Scorpion, due later this year. However, Drake had other plans. Less than 24 hours after Daytona reached streaming services and Drake releases the song “Duppy Freestyle”, which opens with him sighing in exasperation.
“I had a microphone of yours but then the signature faded / I think that pretty much resembles what has been happening lately,” was one of the many notable lines from Drake, the rapper having genuinely once owned a microphone with Pusha’s signature.
Drake also took aim at Kanye West, the producer of “Infrared,” making references to two songs from Kanye’s album The Life of Pablo, “Father Stretch My Hands” and “30 Hours” and the work Drake has apparently done on Ye’s new album.
“What do you really think of the n***a that’s making your beats? / I’ve done things for him I thought he never would need / Father had to stretch his hands out and get it from me / I pop style for 30 hours, then let him repeat,” he raps. Drake concludes the song by asking Pusha for an invoice for the extra publicity, posting said invoice online soon after.
Following the invoice, a few moments silence. How was Pusha going to respond? Turns out, Push was not merely sitting around doing nothing, but concocting the most vicious track against Drake yet: “The Story of Adinon”.
First off, there’s the artwork: an image of Drake apparently wearing blackface from an old photoshoot. While the artist who took the photo, David Leyes, has said he’s “proud to be part of a strong statement made by a black man about the fucked up culture he is living in,” many have seen the image as offensive.
Then there’s the lyrics. Pusha seemingly confirms the long-standing rumours that Drake has a secret child with former adult film star Sophie Brussaux. Not only that, but Pusha talks about Drake’s own troubled upbringing without a father and calls Drake a “deadbeat mothafucka”.
“Adonis is your son / And he deserves more than an Adidas press run, that’s real / Love that baby, respect that girl / Forget she’s a pornstar, let her be your world,” he raps.
With Pusha’s scathing track making headlines around the world, many wondered how Drake would respond? Another track? Or ignore the whole thing completely?
Rather than take Pusha on, the Views rapper decided to release a statement clarifying the meaning behind the ‘blackface’ photograph: “The photos represented how African Americans were once wrongfully portrayed in entertainment. This was to highlight and raise our frustrations with not always getting a fair chance in the industry and to make a point that the struggle for black actors had not changed much.”
While some fans were understanding, Pusha went on the offensive once more. “That does not change my view at all,” he told Los Angeles’ Real 92.3 . “You are silent on all black issues, Drake.... You don’t stand for nothing, you don’t say nothing about nothing. You have all the platform in the world. You were so passionate back then? No, you weren’t. That’s number one. That’s what I know.”
And how did Drake respond? While rumours have swelled that he prepared a track with Lil Wayne that would have been “career ending” fro Pusha and Kanye, Pusha has announced that their beef is “over”. He told Variety: “These conversations have been had and, to my knowledge, it’s all over. It’s all over with.”
For now, that seems to be that. Why the two decided to seemingly end their current feud remains to be seen. With all this history between the two, though, there’s no doubting they will lock horns again at some stage.
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