The Unauthorized History Of Rapper Threats Against The Media

The Unauthorized History Of Rapper Threats Against The Media

So apparently a little blog we did ruffled the feathers of a few rappers who got mentioned therein. Some found it "100% disrespectful" and others just thought we weren't funny. We didn't feel we were shitting down anyone's throat, and we are, in fact, fans of all the rappers mentioned. However some of the young rappers' feelings got hurt, and for that we apologize. That said, we would hope these rappers accept that in their pursuit of being professional artists, they offer their work and persona up for public consumption, making opinions inevitable.

Unfortunately it seems KiD CuDi'a personal fav of Complex'is not yet comfortable with this. In an interview with rapradar.com CuDi proposes beating the ass of our writer as an appropriate response to our gentle ribbing (we felt like turning his blog Stans against us was enough, but whatever...). Thankfully, CuDi explains he'd never stoop to violence (phew!), though others would (uh oh!). While we appreciate the warning, CuDi should know that most of the Complex staff has been writing about hip hop since the pre-blogging days, when writers had to interact with their subjects in the flesh. So we're well aware of what happens when rappers get frustrated at people who own both opinions and computers. For all those who aren't, lets take a stroll down memory lane with a history of Rappers Who've Physically Threatened Violence On The Media...

wupages

Wu-Tang Clan vs. RapPages
Year: 1994
What Happened? Esteemed rap scribbla Cheo H. Coker penned a profile of the Shaolin soldiers for the beloved but defunct RapPages --problem was, the accompanying illustrations (visible here, here, here and here) didn't sit well with the group. So when Coker got back with the crew for another interview, Masta Killa, not yet a core member of the Clan, worked out an exchange: you give me your tape recorder, I punch you in the fuckin' mouf (Coker's account of the madness is here).
...And The Winner Is? Masta Killa is now official Wu-Tang Banga. Coker is now official Notorious co-writer. Stapleton vs. Hollywood, big bank take little bank. We're going with Coker on this one.

cypress

Cypress Hill vs. The Source
Year: 1994
What Happened? On page 42 of their January "Best of 1993" issue, someone at the Source (before they became Almighty RSO Monthly) threw a couple of easy darts at the Hill on a parody news page--provoking a volley of phoned-in death threats from alleged Soul Assassins compadres (hopefully not you, Eric Bobo!). Read the jokes for yourselves...
cypjokes
...And The Winner Is? B-Real is still active, if underappreciated (3,828 first-week copies sold? Wake up, youngsters!). The Source is still active, if a shell of its former self. The real winner? Marijuana!

rso

Almighty RSO vs. The Source (founding staff)
Year: 1994
What Happened? When Boston rap ensemble Almighty RSO, headed by Ray Benzino and managed by Source Publisher Dave Mays, were unhappy with the mic rating that then-Music Editor Reggie Dennis awarded their record, the group started Wrestlemania in the Source conference room. This sparked the RSO-coverage ban which ended in 80% of the Source's staff resigning when, months later, Mays inserted a feature on the group.
...And The Winner Is? As with the Nas/Jigga beef, where there is no clear winner, only a clear loser in Prodigy; similarly, there is no clear winner between Benzino and the mag's original staff, only a clear loser in the Source Publishing.

russell

Russell Simmons vs. VIBE
Year: 1995
What Happened? Rushin' Russ hit the VIBE office when then Editor-In-Chief Alan Light didn't want to give LL a cover for the release of his soft-n-sensuous smash Mr. Smith. To be fair, Mr. "Rock The Bells" was coming off the less than classic 14 Shots To The Dome, but Russell was having none of it and allegedly called Alan a "bitch" and punched a wall in order to show that he meant business. This is obviously before he found yoga.
...And The Winner Is? Since Russell was able to muscle that ridiculous pink cover of LL and his family into Alan's otherwise definitive run of VIBE covers, we have to give it to Mr. Barking Dog.


sadat

Sadat X vs. YN
Year: 1996
What Happened? Unhappy with two vaguely critical reviews of his underwhelming solo debut, Sadat X stepped to the business of then ego trip managing editor and freelance writer Elliott "YN" Wilson at a party in celebration of The VIBE Music Seminar (R.I.P.!). Words were exchanged, and an alleged index-finger mush was attempted, but both parties, and their crews, held their ground and a frustrated rapper walked away hopefully slightly less frustrated.
...And The Winner Is? YN went on to a legendary run as Editor-In-Chief of XXL and now sets the bar for hip-hop journalism on the Internet at a new height every day at rapradar (we subsequently pull it down when he's done), while we hear the third Brand Nubian "reunion" album just went double platinum in Austria...

puff

Puff Daddy vs. VIBE
Year: 1997
What Happened? Back in the days of yore, VIBE used to have a cute section called "In The Mix" where they'd run a gang of paparazzi photos with "funny" snaps accompanying them. Think Bossip, but with less teeth. Anyhow, in one of their summer '97 issues, they ran a pic of Puff with his son Justin at the shoot for the "We'll Always Love Big Poppa" video. The only problem was that Justin was holding a Super Soaker water pistol, and VIBE, obviously, thought this was ironic enough to point out. Puff allegedly called a junior editor and ran down a list of things the caption made him want to do to the staff, none of which were gentle or involved hugs.
...And The Winner Is? Diddy just went on a well documented juice fast, while VIBE was recently put on a circulation diet.


clef

Wyclef Jean vs. BLAZE
Year: 1998
What Happened? Before the premier issue of BLAZE (VIBE's hip-hop spinoff) dropped, Wyclef invited Editor-In-Chief Jesse Washington to drop by the Hit Factory to hear some extra music from the Canibus album. Once there, Wyclef got his Haiti on, allegedly making like Millie and pulling a pistol on J-Dub to complain about the Canibus review that was running in the issue (read Washington's account here. Clef has since denied it, and Canibus simply shrugged off the controversy and went on to go triple platinum join the Army.
...And The Winner Is? Wyclef is still eating off that Fugees record (not to mention that Shakira joint and two platinum solo albums), and Jesse Washington is the Associated Press' official race and ethnicity writer. Which just leaves Canibus. Sorry, Canibus!

foxy

Foxy Brown vs. VIBE
Year: 1998
What Happened? VIBE's then, and now, Editor-In-Chief Danyel Smith put Foxy Brown on the cover and wrote the story herself. While we can't remember much about the whole affair other than Foxy's silver bikini, something about the whole deal set off Brown, who would only later be proved a certified lunatic, and she apparently caught Danyel (who, incidentally, is not a woman we'd ever want to shoot joints with), out and got to some hair-pulling.
...And The Winner Is? Danyel's written acclaimed novels and holds the top spot at VIBE once again. We figured she would totally clap back at Fox Boogie on one of her podcasts, but, frankly, the label-less Brown wouldn't even be able to hear it if she did.

d-dot

Deric "D. Dot" Angelettie vs. BLAZE
Year: 1998
What Happened? BLAZE unwittingly "unmasked" D.Dot as the Mad Rapper, something which was not a known secret, as their voices were EXACTLY THE SAME. In retribution for what he saw as a blow to his potential comedic rap career (SMH), D.Dot showed up at the VIBE/BLAZE office. Editor-In-Chief Jesse Washington met the "All About the Benjamins" producer, and his goon squad, in the conference room to talk it out. Unfortunately, it seems in the Angelettie household, people talk with fists...and chairs. When all was said and done Washington received a vicious thrashing.
...And The Winner Is? Jesse got a rumored high six-figure settlement and has enjoyed a successful career as both an author and Associated Press reporter, while 10 years later the Mad Rapper album is almost a fifth of the way to being certified gold!

zinoxxl

Benzino vs. XXL
Year: 2003
What Happened? XXLlet 50 Cent guest-edit their 50th issue and, instead of narrating a sex tape with Benzino's baby's mother, Fif commissioned an illustration of the aging rapper/publisher and his son on a stage performing with the caption, "They won't stop rapping 'til they retire." Benzino responded by rushing the XXL office, claiming to be GIANT editorial director Smokey Fontaine, of all people. He got up in YN's face and talked about crossed lines and consequences until YN agreed that it had been a low blow and that peace was in the best interest of all parties.
...And The Winner Is? We we would totally say Benzino is the loser here, except we already got hung out of our office window by our ankles once this week so we're pretty good on that.

ozone

Benzino vs. OZONE
Year: 2005
What Happened? OZONE Editor-In-Chief Julia Beverly awarded Ray Benzino "Most Successful Extortionist" in their year-end issue, in addition to running a "True Groupie Confession" about Benzino's predilection for ass-licking. Ray felt this was a misrepresentation of the decade-long partnership between him and Source founder Dave Mays, and that the ass-licking thing was just TMI (we'll take his word on the friendship, and agree wholeheartedly on the later point). Benzino took to his cellular and left one of the most awesomely awesome voicemails in the history of recorded messaging.
...And The Winner Is? OZONE continues to publish while Ray-'n-Dave's bro-mance is still chronicled every other week in Hip Hop Weekly. That said, to this day "Slut-Monkey" is an enduring phrase around the Complex offices, so we're gonna give this one to the big guy from Boston.

Tags: benzino, d-dot, diddy, foxy-brown, kid-cudi, rap-sheet, wu-tang-clan, wyclef-jean, yn
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