The Smoke Hasn't Cleared: Every Subliminal Drake Has Sent Pusha T

It's been over five years since Drake and Pusha T's beef hit a boiling point, and Drizzy is still sending shots his way. Here are all the subliminal disses from Drake since "The Story of Adidon."

Marcelo Hernandez / Getty Images

It’s been a little over five years since Drake and Pusha T began their war of words, and the smoke still has not cleared. 

There’s an argument for where the beef began—some would say it was when Drake sent shots at Push, Kid Cudi, and Kanye West on his loosie “Two Birds One Stone,” while others point to an earlier nondescript feud between the Clipse and Lil Wayne involving Bape—but whenever their beef started, it’s been ongoing for at least half a decade now.

Things hit a boiling point in the summer of 2018 after Drake dropped “Duppy Freestyle,” a direct response to Pusha T’s “Infrared” which called out the OVO rapper for ghostwriting and being sustained by Lil Wayne’s star power. “Duppy Freestyle” took aim at both Pusha T and Kanye West, but what really set Push off, as he explained on the Joe Budden Podcast in 2018, was Drake’s namedropping of his fiance Virginia Williams. This resulted in “The Story of Adidon,” a scathing track that revealed that Drake had a son. 

The rest is history. Drake never responded to “The Story of Adidon” directly in a diss track, but he has dropped a lot of subliminal messages towards Push, Kanye, and now even Pharrell has caught a stray on Travis Scott’s latest song “MELTDOWN.” “I melt down the chains that I bought from ‘yo boss/Give a fuck about all of that heritage shit/Since V not around, the members done hung up the Louis, they not even wearing that shit,” Drake raps.

With enough subliminals to make a singular response, here is every shot Drake has sneakily sent at Pusha T since “The Story of Adidon.”

“Yeah, I was about to—Man, I thought about it/It's unsettlin' to talk about it” - “Survival” (2018)

View this video on YouTube

Drake / Via Youtube

The only thing worse than not responding to a diss track directly is saying that you have a response and never dropping it, and that’s what this bar unfortunately alludes to. Legend has it that Drake wrote a response to “The Story of Adidon,” but did not release it at the request of J Prince. This is the same Prince who brokered the temporary peace treaty between Drake and Kanye, which then led to their Free Larry Hoover Benefit show in 2021.

“Last year, niggas really feel like they rode on me/Last year, niggas got hot 'cause they told on me” - "Omerta" (2019)

View this video on YouTube

Drake / Via Youtube

In the months immediately following Scorpion and Drake’s pseudo response to “The Story of Adidon” with album cuts like “Survival,” he littered his loosies with suggestive verses about how he did not lose the beef. This bar off 2019’s “Omerta” is an example of that, with Drizzy suggesting that Push only “won” their feud because he “told on” him, in reference to the dope rapper revealing that Drake had a son.

“I plan to buy your most personal belongings when they’re up for auction/Truth be told I think about it often, the Petty King” - “Omerta” (2019)

View this video on YouTube

Drake / Via Youtube

When this line initially came out, it seemed like just another spiteful bar from the petty king. But now with added context and new information—including from Drake’s verse on Travis Scott’s “MELTDOWN,” this might have been a sign that The Boy’s shade towards Pharrell has been premeditated this entire time. The bar also has more weigh now since he actually bought nearly $3 million worth of Williams’ classic jewelry when it went up for auction at the beginning of 2023.

“Dealt with your big homie already, don’t make me have to side-by-side you/‘Nough times he tried to hide behind you” - "Only You Freestyle" (2020)

View this video on YouTube

Drake / Via Youtube

This is another subliminal directed towards Push and Drake’s other forever nemesis, Kanye West. “Dealt with your big homie already” is in reference to Drake “winning” his beef against Kanye West at the time following his “Duppy Freestyle” verse several others on Scorpion like “8 out of 10.” “Don’t make me have to side-by-side you/’Nough times he tried to hide behind you,” is just another excuse for Drake to dovetail Kanye into a sub for Push.

“All I hear is plug talk coming from Middle Men” - “Churchill Downs” (2022)

View this video on YouTube

Jack Harlow / Via Youtube

Drake loves to use this kind of sub—insinuating that Pusha T was never the kingpin drug dealer that his music claims he is, but instead was just a middleman. He says something similar in “Duppy Freestyle” when he raps, “Your brother said it was your cousin, then him, then you/So you don’t rap what you did, you just rap what you knew.” It’s basically Drake’s go-to response to Push whenever his own authenticity is called into question.

“I melt down the chains that I bought from ‘yo boss/Give a fuck about all of that heritage shit/Since V not around, the members done hung up the Louis, they not even wearing that shit” - “MELTDOWN” (2023)

View this video on YouTube

Travis Scott / Via Youtube

Drake’s entire verse on Travis Scott’s “MELTDOWN” is basically all about Pusha T. But, there are also some weird strays directed at Pharrell along the way. The chains that Drake is believed to be referencing are the classic Pharrell jewelry that he bought for $3 million in an auction at the beginning of 2023 and wore later in his “Jumbotron Shit Poppin” music video. These are classic pieces, and even the notion of melting them down is considered hip-hop taboo, which makes the subliminal that much more potent, including Drake suggesting that “the members done hung up the Louis” because Pharrell now oversees the creative direction of the luxury brand in place of the late Virgil Abloh. 

 He also claims that Push is “scared of the 6” and then seemingly references an altercation that happened in 2018 during one of his Toronto shows shortly after “The Story of Adidon” dropped. It’s the most direct Drake has been since “Duppy Freestyle.”

Latest in Music