By Carter Maness
With the short, boss-like proclamation, “Young Money ain’t doing summer jam,” Lil Wayne wasn’t just pulling Nicki Minaj and the rest of his roster out of the lineup for Hot 97’s annual bash. He seemed to be declaring war.
After Hot 97 DJ and hip-hop purist Peter Rosenberg declared Minaj’s “Starships” single as “wack,” a vicious war of words ensued with Nicki, Jae Millz, Birdman and other YMCMB affiliates trying to steal the station’s thunder. Of course, Hot 97 has their own linguistic assassin in the form of Funkmaster Flex. He quickly declared that the station “ain’t f—-n’ with commercial rappers no more,” yet he might have Minaj on his show tonight to air the situation out.
So, what are the repercussions for Young Money? Could their roster actually, gasp, be cut out of the Hot 97 playlist where they’ve dominated for years? It’s doubtful. History can be a good guide to how these artist versus radio beefs (most involving Hot 97) usually work out. Most often, strong words temporarily drive higher ratings, and then everything returns back to normal.
Nas v. Hot 97
The most iconic moment in Summer Jam history has to be Jay-Z unveiling “The Takeover” in 2001, but the next year, when Nas was scheduled to headline, he planned to figuratively bury Jay onstage in retaliation. When the station declined the stunt, Nas refused to show up for his set, instead heading to rival station Power 106.1 to blast Hot 97 for their lack of support and bias towards Jay. Fortunately, Nas returned to Summer Jam in 2012 as a surprise headliner and, along with Lauryn Hill, dominated.
Eminem v. Hot 97
Back in 2009, Rosenberg and his co-host Cipha Sounds weren’t feeling Eminem’s attack on Mariah Carey (too easy a target!) so they made a spoof track called “Em Is Over.” The stoic rapper never officially responded. Why would he?
Trae Tha Truth v. Houston’s 97.9 KBXX
After morning show host Nnete Invangumia claimed local rapper Trae Tha Truth’s music played a role in inciting violence at his local festival, Trae called out the host on his mixtape, and the station banned the rapper’s music altogether. When Box DJs such as Brandi Garcia tried to slip from Trae into their sets, they were fired and, in 2010, the rapper eventually filed a lawsuit against the station claiming they had damaged his career through the ban.
Game v. Washington D.C.’s 93.9 WKYS
Game, no stranger to beef, had one of his more costly moments when his entourage assaulted radio host Kwasi “DJ Zxulu” Jones for making fun of Game’s manager Jimmy Henchmen. At the peak of his career, an immediate ban on Game records was issued. After the story ran its course, the ban was eventually lifted.
Young Buck v. Atlanta’s WHTA 107.9
Back in 2006, G-Unit rapper Young Buck went crazy back on an Atlanta DJ after he played the Game’s “One Blood.” As Game was warring with Buck’s boss, 50 Cent, the reaction was understandable. Yet after confronting and assaulting DJ Will at the local club Nocturnal, station management banned Buck’s music.
N.O.R.E. v. Hot 97
Yesterday’s Minaj incident wasn’t the first time Peter Rosenberg’s actions have gotten him in trouble this year. Angry that the morning show host had failed to respond to his text about a co-hosting stint in a timely manner, N.O.R.E. responded by warning Rosenberg that he should probably get security. Eventually, both parties joined together on the air to make amends.