You'd be hard-pressed to name a rapper who has had more beefs than Drake. That may seem far-fetched given his (let's just call it "semi-cuddly") image, but when you run down Drizzy's rogue's gallery--veteran rappers, musical peers and rivals, high profile ex-girlfriends--there's enough antagonistic characters to make Batman start poppin' Zoloft.
And Drake doesn't back down from a fight. He's not always the most blatant aggressor, either. So with this ongoing thing happening between him and Joe Budden, we decided to run down some of the OVO leader's most infamous sneak attacks--those subtle shots fired at famous nemeses who came at young Aubrey.
Target: Kendrick Lamar
"Yeah, when you get to where I'm at/You gotta remind 'em where the fuck you at/Every time they talkin' it's behind your back/Gotta learn to line 'em up and then attack/They gon' say your name on them airwaves/They gon' hit you up right after like it's only rap Jew/ls look like I found a motherfuckin' treasure map/And ain't told no one where the fuck it's at"
Drizzy didn't take too kindly to K. Dot's infamous "Control" verse and he spent a lot of time not-so-subtly firing back at the Compton rapper--most notably here: where he alluded to the fact that Kendrick dissed him (and damn-near every other top tier rapper in 2013) then dismissed it as just hip-hop.
Target: Jay Z
"Just hits, no misses, that's for the married folk/Tell 'em fix my suite up cause I'm comin' home/I heard they talking crazy, I was out of town/You know they love to pop all that shit when I'm not around/But when I'm here, not a sound, that'll make me snap, jot it down/Go in the booth and lay a body down/Know some Somalis that say we got it Wallahi/Get us donuts and coffee, we'll wait for him in the lobby"
"It's like Hov can't drop bars these days without at least four art references."
That's what Drake said in a controversial Rolling Stone interview that apparently irked the hell out of Jay Z--who responded on Jay Electronica's "We Made It Freestyle" with: "Sorry Mrs. Drizzy for so much art talk/Silly me, rappin' 'bout shit that I really bought."
Drake decided to sneak in the last word with that clever "No misses, that's for the married folks" line--a reference to Jay's high-profile marriage and to the flop that was Jay's Magna Carta Holy Grail the year before.
"It bothers me when the gods get to acting like the broads/Guess every team doesn’t come complete with niggas like ours/That's why I see no need to compete with niggas like y’all I just ask that when you see me you speak up, nigga, that's all/Don’t be ducking like you never wanted nothing It's feeling like rap changed, it was a time it was rugged/Back when if a nigga reached it was for the weapon/Nowadays niggas reach just to sell they record"
Common was the first to fire a sneak shot back in 2012, on his track "Sweet" where he rapped: ""Singing all around me man, la la la/You ain’t muthafucking Frank Sinatra," which was widely-interpreted as a dig at Drake. Drake fired back on "Stay Schemin'" accusing the elder rap star of reaching for controversy to sell records.
Target: Joe Budden(?)
"Pump, pump, pump it up/She got a good head on her, but I pump it up/I'm not a one hit wonder, they know all my stuff/You let me turn into the nigga that you almost was/I done seen a lot of shit and I done been in things/And I never started nothin', I just finish things/And I'm sell off like the man that brought me in this thing/How you out here celebratin' like the winnin' team?/No, calm down, calm down/Shit ain't how you think it is, take a look around"
Drake and Joe Budden had been friends when Drake was an up-and-comer and Budden had established himself following his hit "Pump It Up." Things soured and Budden feels Drake dissed him. French Montana swears that this particular verse wasn't a diss--but it sure sounds like one; with Drake opening his verse referencing Budden's only actual "hit" solo record and then mentioning "one hit wonder" in the verse.
"Aww that look like what’s her name, chances are it’s whats her name/Chances are if she was acting up then I fucked her once and never fucked again/She could have a Grammy, I still treat her ass like a nominee/Just need to know what that pussy like so one time is fine with me"
Drake and Rih-Rih are all lovey-dovey now, but it's been years of hot-and-cold between the two superstars. And things got boiling hot and then icy in 2012, after Drake and Rihanna's other famous ex, Chris Brown, got into their infamous brawl at a nightspot in New York City. Afterwards, Drake fired what seemed to be obvious shots at the Bajan beauty. Not that we're trying to bring up old stuff.
Target: Pusha T
"IRS all in my books getting they Matlock on/All this capital it's like I left the caps lock on/It's like every time I plot a return I seem to shift the game/See I can still talk keys without pitchin' cane/Pay yourself and owe yourself; before you come to my city "
Drake and Pusha T have no love lost between them. A byproduct of Pusha T's distaste for Drizzy mentor Lil Wayne, Pusha took a jab at Drake on 2012s "Exodus 23:1" when he rhymed ""You signed to one nigga that signed to another nigga that's signed to three niggas/ Now that's bad luck"
Drake fired back several times, including here, where he made it clear that slanging 'cane (Pusha T's favorite subject) isn't necessary to run the game.
"6PM In New York"
"I heard a little little homie talking reckless in Vibe/That's quite a platform you chose, you should've kept it inside/Oh, you tried It's so childish calling my name on the world stage/You need to act your age and not your girl's age"
Tyga was feuding with Cash Money/Young Money throughout 2015, and he slammed his labelmates in an interview with Vibe: “I’m tryna go independent. I don’t really get along with Drake. I don’t really get along with Nicki,” he said at the time.
Drake made sure to not let that slide, going after his estranged labelmate with both barrels--especially clowning Tyga's relationship with the barely-18 Kylie Jenner.
"4PM In Calabasas"
"Can't nobody hold me down, especially not right now/Certain shit is just too wild to reconcile/Take that, take that no love in they heart so they fake that DiCaprio level the way they play that, damn nigga, what is that/Y'all hear no songs then hit my phone like you did that/And you even hit my line like where you been at/It's always on some shit like when can I get a favor"
This beef was born of a beat. Drake's "1-100" beat was initially produced by Boi 1da for Diddy, who sent it to Drake to reportedly record a guest verse. Drake, obviously, kept the beat for himself, leading to a physical confrontation in Miami where Diddy punched Drizzy. Even J. Prince of Rap-A-Lot threatened Diddy on behalf of Drake, who referenced the debacle here.
Target: Beanie Sigel
"Couple artists got words for me, that's never fun/They say it's on when they see me, that day don't ever come/I'm never scared, they never real, I never run/When all is said and done, more is always said than done."
Beans believed that Jay Z dissed him on Drake's "Light Up" back in 2010 so in an interview, Sigel went at Jay and Drake. "Smack the shit outta Drake’s bitch ass, all y’all niggas," he said during an interview featured on the Halfway House DVD. "This the Broad Street Bully. I have no problem seein’ anybody on sight.”
Drake didn't back down--referencing the tough talk in this verse. He also acknowledged that nothing ever came from it but talk.
"5 AM in Toronto"
Target: The Weeknd
"Some nobody started feeling himself/A couple somebodies started killing themself/A couple albums dropped, those are still on the shelf/I bet them shits would have popped if I was willing to help."
The Weeknd and Drake have a connected history; Drizzy put his fellow Canadian on several tracks, helping to spotlight the mysterious singer-songwriter early on. But when The Weeknd signed with Universal Republic instead of OVO, there were long-simmering whispers of a spurned Drake feeling bitter. And though he's a pop superstar now, it took The Weeknd a few years to break through commercially. So fans saw this line as a sucker punch at his former compadre.