The Student Newspaper of DePaul University

The DePaulia

The Student Newspaper of DePaul University

The DePaulia

The Student Newspaper of DePaul University

The DePaulia

Rappers are beefing — I’m team Kendrick Lamar

Associated Press
Rapper Kendrick Lamar appears at the MTV Video Music Awards, on Aug. 27, 2017, in Inglewood, Calif., left, and Canadian rapper Drake appears at the premiere of the series “Euphoria,” in Los Angeles on June 4, 2019.

I vividly remember the day my mom took my Spotify app for a week. After a long day of seventh grade, she and my dad sat me down and told me it would be going away for a while because they’d found out what music I was listening to.

My mom pulled up the song “These Walls” by Kendrick Lamar. I sighed and knew my fate was probably justified since I was so young and the content was more mature for my age. No matter how many times I tried to look up “These-Walls-no-intro” or “These-Walls-clean-version,” I had to take my punishment.

After the week was over, I tried my damndest to hide my Kendrick obsession until my parents just stopped caring. As my music taste developed, his music stayed a constant in my listening history. I dug deeper through his discography like my life depended on it and realized how well-written all his songs are. He is a genius.

Now, Lamar and Drake are all over my social media, and I can’t help but read into it. Following @Rap on Instagram and liking “#BBLDrizzy” hasn’t helped, but as die-hard fans of both artists, the headlines caught my eye. As I read further into the drama and looked back on the production value and “meat” of the music, Kendrick Lamar is the clear winner. 

The feud that erupted between Lamar and Drake is more intense than any other beef our generation has seen.

The hip-hop community hasn’t seen this hostile of a situation since the days of Tupac and Biggie. From the technology in the studio to social media, this beef in the rap community has gone global.

Things used to be peaceful between the two. Those who know me personally know that Lamar’s debut with Drake on “Buried Alive Interlude” is one of my favorite songs — so much so that when I queue it up, I’m met with, “Turn that off! We’ve heard it three other times today.”

That track, living in Drake’s “Take Care” album, released in November 2011 started a long time collaboration between the two artists. The collaboration also greatly aided Lamar’s rise to the West Coast’s next lyrical messiah.

In 2023, Drake’s project “For All The Dogs” was released. On the album, “First Person Shooter” held a line fired by J. Cole proclaimed to the world that he, Drake and Lamar were the “big three” of rap.

This began the spiral that is now the largest rap drama in my lifetime.

“Everyone had it out for Drake’s sneaky shots he’s taken over the years,” DePaul junior Charlie Deuter said. “Kendrick just happened to throw the first punch.”

Deuter felt like Drake had always been a joke in the rap industry, and as he rose higher to fame, his cockiness and attitude changed. Like the verse in “First Person Shooter,” Drake kept aligning his career with more experienced and well-known artists.

The responses to this began with “Like That,” a track on Metro Boomin and Future’s “We Don’t Trust You” album. With the two powerhouse artists to back him, Lamar went off on his verse.

From calling Drake out for “sneak dissing” on “First Person Shooter” to putting him back in his place saying “it’s just big me,” Lamar began his fight against Drake.  

Some fans don’t like it.

“I think the whole thing is immature,” Zohar Bensimon said. “Two grown men are fighting over songs about very personal aspects of their lives.”

It is hard to say if the fight will continue. After several tracks from Lamar and Drake, it seems that all we’ve gotten from this argument is new music to listen to and TikTok audios so we can rant about how much we hate our exes.

Kendrick Lamar has received backing from multiple artists and a large majority of rap listeners. His seniority may not be the same as Drake’s, but the impact and meaning behind his music holds much more depth than Drake’s.

 With a Pulitzer Prize and a discography of musical poetry, Lamar has more than enough to win this fight. 

Before I could even comprehend what any of his lyrics meant, or understand the huge impact of his music, I had been fighting for Lamar against his biggest hater. From my own mother to Drake, I believe Kendrick’s experience and legendary status to end this beef as a winner.

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