J. Cole’s manager and Dreamville Records co-founder Ibrahim “IB” Hamad sat down for a lengthy interview on the Say Less podcast, and during the chat he gave a few more details about what really went down between Cole, Diddy, and Kendrick Lamar in 2013.
The long-rumored fight altercation between Cole and Diddy was finally confirmed by the former rapper himself on his The Off-Season highlight “Let Go My Hand,” which features an outro from Diddy. “My last scrap was with Puff Daddy, who would’ve thought it?” Cole raps on the track. “I bought that n***a album in seventh grade and played it so much / You would’ve thought my favorite rapper was Puff.” With their altercation once again on people’s minds because of the track, IB opened up about the situation just a little more.
“The Puff story… I just remember hearing about it and laughing,” he said at the 12-minute mark, “’Cause I was there.”
In a tweet last year, Hamad refuted a retelling of the story in which it was suggested Cole intervened after Diddy attempted to pour a drink on Kendrick due to a disagreement about his infamous verse on Big Sean’s “Control.” “I’m not gonna go into detail, but it’s definitely not what people are saying,” he added on Say Less, before offering a few more details that break down how it “was never a real issue.”
“It was definitely not like he was defending Kendrick or something,” he noted. “It wasn’t like, ‘Don’t talk to Kendrick like that!’ Kendrick was there, Top was there, Jay was there, Beyoncé was there. Me and Cole. You know, grown men. … Got a little heated,” he continued with a smile. “All I remember is, me and Jay looking at each other like, ‘Oh, these n***as ’bout to fight.’ And then just being like, ‘Oh no this is ’bout to happen.’ I’ll leave it at that.”
“You wanna know the funny part? That was a VMA party, everyone was there. Angela Yee was literally at the table. I fuck with Yee, but she got Rumor Report and shit. Walking out of there I’m like, ‘Oh this about to be baaad.’ But for some reason no one had a camera out, a couple people was talking about it, but you know.” The next day, the situation had already been mostly figured out between everyone involved, Hamad added.
As he noted earlier in the interview, Diddy’s vocals for “Let Go My Hand” was recorded in “the last week” of work on The Off-Season.
Elsewhere in the interview, Hamad spoke about the decision to not credit the features on the songs. “I fought Cole on that,” Hamad said at the 25:50 mark. The appearance of features on the record came as a surprise to many fans when it arrived on May 14. “I really wanted the features on there. He was like, ‘Nah, no features.’ I was like, ‘You sure?’” he said. “At one point he was like, ‘Why you keep asking me?’ I definitely fought him on that.”
Also touched upon was Damian Lillard’s appearance on “Punchin’ the Clock,” and how he felt somewhat embarassed upon following up with him. “I’ll never forget it, cause first he was like, ‘Yo, anything y’all need, Cole is my favorite rapper...’ I sent it, and I remember I didn’t hear nothin’ back.” He sent a follow-up message to check-in on the status, only to get a response like, “Yo my fault bro I just had my twins.”
Watch the full interview with Cole above.