This beef is not worth the hype.
-Written by Vinny Guarino
Being that I’ve been writing a lot about hip-hop, it seems imperative that I cover the present conflict between female MCs Nicki Minaj and Remy Ma. But I will not spend too much time on it because I find it to be WACK.
Remy Ma has been around for years — she made a name for herself in the New York battle scene and most notably as a member of Fat Joe’s Terror Squad. At her peak, she rapped the second verse on Terror Squad’s #1 song “Lean Back” in 2004. She followed that up with a few decent solo singles such as “Whuteva” and “Conceited” that did little to add to her fame as an artist.
In 2007, Remy Ma went to prison for shooting a member of her entourage. YEAH. She stayed locked up in the hole until August of 2014. While she was behind bars, another female rapper named Nicki Minaj became famous. You know this though. Nicki is big time. She can rap circles around some of the most respected names in the genre, she can sing pop songs that top the Billboard charts, and she can create incredibly viral Internet content seemingly on a whim.
659 Million Views
In other words, Nicki didn’t just fill the void of “famous female rapper” that was left when Remy was imprisoned — she became a mainstream superstar with her own lane.
Anyway, Remy and Nicki have always been respectful towards each other. In a recent Hot 97 interview, Remy even brought up the idea that she and Nicki should collaborate as a way to silence rumors that there was drama between the two. That was February 12, 2017. Well, just two weeks later, Remy Ma released “ShETHER” — a scathing diss song aimed at Nicki Minaj rapped over the “Ether” beat that Nas used to lyrically disparage Jay-Z in 2001.
Care to listen?
This had a lot of potential but nah.
I listened to “ShETHER” because I always knew Remy was going to try to come for Nicki’s throne. I needed to see if Remy was going to step up the rapping. Short story — she didn’t. She said a lot but nothing she said was impressive. She listed rumor after rumor about Nicki in a monotonous flow. One of my favorite current rappers, Open Mike Eagle, summarized “ShETHER” so accurately in a tweet following the song’s release:
shether is a bossip post mostly. a lot of slut-shaming and not much technique. she can do a lot better than that.— Open Mike Eagle (@Mike_Eagle) February 26, 2017
For reference, Bossip is a gossip outlet that covers Black celebrities. Spot on. The reason why this song became a trending topic is largely because of gossipy allegations Remy makes about Nicki concerning her past boyfriends and possible relationships with hip-hop moguls. These types of subjects don’t automatically make a song wack in my opinion — it’s mostly the fact that Remy didn’t rhyme in a clever way.
Look at when Drake took down Meek Mill on “Back to Back.” Sure, there were some gossipy elements to the song — but the fact that Drake delivered them with a cool flow and memorable style makes it a quality listen (“Is that a world tour or your girl’s tour?”).
Following the Twitter storm that followed the release of “ShETHER,” Remy capitalized on the free press by releasing a second diss track aimed at Nicki called “Anotha One” breaking the golden rule of “If she doesn’t answer your first text, don’t send another one.” Now Remy is looking a bit desperate. Most people online seem to feel that she should have stopped after “ShETHER” and I agree.
Remy’s most recent success was her #1 song with Fat Joe “All the Way Up.” That was a dope song. Unfortunately for her, their album Plata O Plomo flopped — selling approx. 11,000 units its first week. Nicki has played this whole situation pretty cool — not releasing any malicious songs in return.
Both should focus on their own music because this beef is pointless and boring. Nicki is a superstar and Remy is doing her thing too. Just because they’re both successful female rappers shouldn’t mean they need to be at each other’s throats. I’d rather hear another NY anthem from Remy, and I’d rather Nicki reunite with her Young Money fam for another hit.
We need some jams for Summer ’17, am I right?