The Battle and the Beef

Meek Mill V.S. Drake

  (Joel Ryan/Associated Press)

Rivalry and arguments, or so called “beef” between “whatshername” and “that other girl” is one thing, but the stakes are much higher when high ­profile celebrities who seemingly have it all start to exchange jabs. Tupac vs. Biggie, Taylor Swift vs. Katy Perry, Azealia Banks vs. Iggy Azalea and now Meek Mill vs. “The 6 God,” just to name a few, have all caused frenzy in the media for their petty comments about the other. So what are the circumstances behind this already notorious feud?

If nothing else, when chart­-toppers insult each other about album sales, Top 40 chart positions, and net worth, it opens up a window of opportunity for fans to have their say on who trumps whom musically. Not many of today’s rappers would blatantly come after Drake, the golden boy of hip­-hop, especially by accusing him of ghostwriting, a high offense in a field of writers. Cases of this are usually not exposed at all or exposed subliminally. Meek Mill has guts.

 (Canoe Jam)

But, unfortunately for Meek Mill, Drake has die-hard fans. “Drake is the best rapper known to man,” said senior Azari Alexander. She also knows his age, birthday and net worth. Because of the passion that Drake’s fans have for him, no one asked Meek Mill’s side of the story. Drake fans endlessly slandered Mill over the Internet and discredited all of his accomplishments and abilities. But it should be kept in mind that loyal fans are extremely biased and should not take away from the fact that Meek Mill has accomplishments of his own, and is at minimum, a good rapper.

Celebrities get to glory in “street cred’’ if they make a strong, witty comeback or they could be publicly humiliated if their response is weak or not well thought out. In the case of Meek Mill vs. Drake, some would say Meek Mill lost the battle since his rebuttal verses on “Wanna Know” were subpar to Drake’s two diss tracks “Charged Up” and “Back to Back.” Most music fans would consider an artist whose face is plastered all over Twitter memes an immediate loser, but that isn’t the final verdict.

Ultimately, Meek Mill won the war. Sure, he lost some Twitter followers, but his commercial success was not negatively impacted, as “Dreams Worth More than Money” still debuted at no.1 (with approximately 50,000 more sales than his last album’s first week debut) and he has more exposure than ever thanks to Drake’s constant mentions of him.

Drake is already an international rap star—he’s the first rapper to be no.1 on the Billboard Artist 100. He’s been nominated for a Grammy 16 times, with one win, and has more Hot 100 songs than The Beatles—so the success of his diss records only have so much potential to boost his popularity. It did seem to finally remove the last trickles of his label as “the sensitive rapper,” which appeared to be his goal for the last two years. This is evident through his trap-influenced songs, characterized by a combination of hip-hop, dance music and dub (low frequency, repetitive beats), such as “Tuesday” and “Energy.”

As entertaining as celebrity beef can be, isn’t there supposed to be a certain camaraderie

between musicians? Yes, there is competition between artists to go down in history as one of the greatest, but the appreciation that both successfully broke into the impenetrable music world should overcome frivolous issues. This isn’t the case. It’s unfortunate that the majority of these feuds occur between artists who once were friends or collaborated on projects. They don’t realize how small their issues are until later. A month later, after people have stopped talking about the beef completely, Meek Mill and Drake will look back and realize that what is most important is the legacy of their careers, not arguing with who they must coexist.