Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Checkmate


Jadakiss
As you've no doubt heard, 50 Cent released his second major-label album last week and "The Massacre" has been racking up record sales totals ever since. In addition to a controversial feud with fellow Aftermath artist and former G-Unit member Game, 50 received a lot of attention for a "diss track" on the album titled "Piggy Bank." On the song, he takes several playful (and one or two not-so-playful) shots at fellow rappers and invites them to fire back in a war of words. The media has gone bananas for this controversial situation as they no doubt ghoulishly hope for sudden escalation and retaliation, but the artists in question have reacted quite differently. Hip Hop mainstay Nas simply opined that 50 was looking for some extra pub before the release of "The Massacre." Fat Joe seemed annoyed but content to wait until his own album releases in May to fire back (he might want to wait forever, since he's terrible). Shyne had no choice but to hold his tongue, since he's hanging out in prison for the next 10 years. The only "dissed" MC to step right to the mic was Jadakiss, a member of the Lox known for being a skilled lyricist. Last Thursday he released "Checkmate," a retaliatory track aimed right at 50 Cent. Considering his reputation and the boastful statements he was making in regard to what he had in store for 50, I had high expectations for Jada's response. The result? A big letdown.

For starters, he begins the track by yelling out "Congratulations, homie! You made history; 1.1 million in a short week!" followed by some creepy cackling. I'm personally having a hard time figuring out how he's "dissing" him exactly. That would be like Michael Redd taunting Allen Iverson by saying, "Congrats, AI. You scored 48.5 points per game against us this year! Ha ha!"

Furthermore, the lines that many will be saying "destroyed 50" were nothing more than conflicting, uninteresting, recycled nonsense. Here were the "best" lines Kiss had to offer:

"Picture Kiss not coming out swinging, that's like going to see 50 at a show and he don't come out singing." This line sums up why they will never get this straightened out. 50 prides himself on writing catchy hooks and selling a ton of records, while Jadakiss prides himself on NOT doing that. Hard to see how that is going to get resolved. Not to use another sports analogy, but that would be like Barry Bonds telling Juan Pierre, "All you do is steal bases" and Pierre retorting, "Oh yeah, all you do is hit home runs!" See what I mean?

"I'll hold the 4-5 myself and hop out the range on 1-4-5 myself." This is pretty good in the "I can handle my own business" vein, but unfortunately he follow it up with "Don't try to pull rank on Kiss, because the homies I'm 'a send to do it ain't gonna miss." In one line he talks about taking care of his own conflict, then he turns around says he'll send somebody to do it for him. Subject matter aside, that's just about the most contradictory statement someone could make.

"You made a lot of money now be cool, or I'll swell up your lips like seafood." This one isn't bad. A bit of a misplaced modifier, but I'm not going to get that picky. Plus, my buddy Juice definitely responds this way to seafood. Worse, actually.

"You should just sell clothes and sneakers, 'cause out of your whole camp, your flows the weakest." This is probably the best line on the track, but alas, it's a ripoff. Go back to Jay-Z's legendary "Takeover" (considered by many to be the benchmark for diss tracks) and you see that he rips Nas by telling him, "Fell from Top 10 to not mentioned at all, 'till your bodyguard's 'Oochie Wallie' verse was better than yours. Matter of fact you had the worst flow on the whole song ..." So this isn't exactly original work.

To give Jadakiss some credit, he's putting his money where his mouth is. He challenged 50 to a live battle rap on HBO for a purse of $1 million. Stay tuned for 50's response ...

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

What exactly did 50 Cent say to start the whole thing anyway?

Mellow Yellow Master C said...

dis records are as lame as high school chick fights. no, i take that back - those are pretty rockin. seriously though, these guys are just dumb kids. beef. ha. you shouldn't be allowed to have beef until you are a well respected and established artist, otherwise it's like my roommate saying he's a better guitar player than i am - and we all know that's a bunch of SHYTE!

Adam Hoff said...

To answer the question about what 50 said ...

In "Piggy Bank" he raps:

Jada, don't mess with me, if you wanna eat - or I'll do you like Jay did Mobb Deep
Homies in New York say they like your vocals - but that's only New York, dawg, your a** is local

Basically, he was just taking a shot at his low record sales and regional appeal. Apparently, the reason he mentioned him at all is because Jadakiss (and others) did a song with his sworn enemy, Ja Rule. So there you have it.