Who doesn’t like a good ol’ fashioned rap beef?
Since Kool Herc’s first party in the South Bronx one summer day in August of 1973, feuds between MCs and crews have come and gone throughout hip-hop’s history. there’s really no shortage of a lyrical sparring match you can revisit and reminisce on. Even today, there’s some bad blood between rappers that’s just won’t go away. as part of our EDITORIALS fmg will be giving you some perspective on our series THE ART OF RAP BEEFS. ENJOY!!!
The East Coast/West Coast feud waged on when Ice Cube felt a certain way about Common’s rhymes on “I Used to Love H.E.R,” thinking that he was putting down gangsta rap. Common rapped:
“But then she broke to the West Coast, and that was cool / Cause around the same time, I went away to school / And I’m a man of expanding, so why should I stand in her way / She probably get her money in L.A…”
“Talking about poppin’ Glocks serving rocks and hitting switches / Now she’s a gangsta bitches / Always smoking blunts and getting drunk / Telling me sad stories, now she only fucks with the funk.”
Cube interpreted that as a diss to West Coast hip-hop in general. On Mack 10’s “Westside Slaughterhouse” featuring W.C., Cube didn’t dance around his response to Common, seemingly going for the killshot in just four bars: “Used to love her, mad cause we f*cked her / Pussy-whipped b*tch, with no common sense / Hip-hop started in the West / Ice Cube bailin’ through the East without a vest.”
Common wasn’t going to let those disrespectful words linger too long and responded back with “The Bitch in Yoo.” He got a beat from Pete Rock and went to work, writing a devastating diss that ripped Cube apart. “A bitch n***a with an attitude named Cube / Stepped to the Com with a feud / Now what the fuck I look like dissing a whole coast / You ain’t made shit dope since AmeriKKKa’s Most” and even ended the song with his own rhyme from “A Bitch Iz a Bitch,” “Any last words before I hit the switch / From the immortal words of one, a b*tch is a b*tch.”
After the murders of Tupac and Biggie, Minister Louis Farrakhan of the Nation of Islam organized a hip-hop peace summit on April 3, 1997 in an attempt to unify the East and the West. What started as a lyrical fight took a positive turn when Ice Cube and Common hugged each other, officially ending their beef.
In retrospect, many argued that this battle harmed Cube’s career. Five years after Lethal Injection, Cube released War & Peace Vol. 1 (The War Disc) that was met with unfavorable reviews, and in 2000, War & Peace Vol. 2 (The Peace Disc) was considered subpar compared to his earlier albums. Since he was already starting his transition into acting, Cube was moving on to other aspects of entertainment. But this fallout certainly didn’t hurt his legacy too much.