For the most part, Jay-z has avoided beef. He has had numerous shots thrown at him. He has even made a few subliminal shots himself. But for the most part, you guys don’t want it with Hov. If Jay-z takes the time out to respond to a rapper, or to start a beef with a rapper, it’s usually quite the battle to witness. Some of them have gotten pretty heated. A couple died down and way in the past. Let’s take a look the top 5 Jay z beefs.
The Mase and Jay-z beef was one of Jay’s earliest battles. It came as a surprise because Jay-z had close ties with Bad Boy. Biggie and Jay were friends. Jay-z collaborated with Puff on his first album. Mase was the only rapper in the Bad Boy family who had a problem with Jay. Mase threw a couple jabs at Jay on a 112 track. Jay responded back and killed the entire beef. This past December, Mase spoke out about their beef in the 90s, saying it was over a girl that both of them were messing with. Who won this battle? Jay.
This is probably the saddest beef on this list. If you don’t know who Jaz-O is, you should look him up. Remember that last verse on Jigga What when that random rapper came on and smashed the entire song? That was Jaz. He’s also the guy who produced some of Jay-z’s first album and one of his oldest closet friends. Jay-z use to be Jaz-O’s hype man. Jaz had a deal with Columbia that never really jumped off. Jay-z ended up getting a career of his own. Somewhere down the line, him and Jaz fell out. Jaz released a bunch of diss songs. Jay-z responded by having his rocafella crew handle his light work. What really sucks is this is the perfect example of how money and success can tear friends and family apart. Who won? Technically Jay, but really no one.
Cam’ron & Jim Jones
New York was on fire when news hit that Dipset was joing Rocafella. Cam’ron was a hero up in Harlem. And Rocafella was the hottest crew in NY. Cam and Jay even recorded a song together for Cam’s first rocafella album. People were excited for the spark put back in NY Hip Hop. What people didn’t know was that they secretly didn’t get along. Cam was Dame’s friend. Jay had nothing to do with bringing Cam and Jimmy onto Rocafella. Once Rocafella ended, so did the nice play between Cam and Jay. Cam began throwing shots at Jay-z. Jay didn’t really respond until Jim Jones got in it too. Jimmy started to make a name for himself outside of Cam’s shadow. He began to throw Jay’s name around too. Then Jay recorded a couple diss tracks on Kingdom Come which we won’t talk about. The beef died out but they still don’t like each other to this day. You might catch Jim throw a shot at Hov every once in awhile. Who won? It’s a Draw.
This is a long long story. Jay-z was once ready to hand the crown to Lil Wayne. He said so in numerous collaborations with Weezy. How did they start beefing. Jay-z was also Lil Wayne’s favorite rapper. He said in numerous interviews how he looked up to Jay. He started calling himself the best rapper alive after Jay-z retired, and said it was because he was retiring. When Jay came back, him and Wayne had a bond, but things went wrong. First Jay wanted to sign Wayne to Rocnation, but he wouldn’t sign the Young Money imprint. Then they recorded a few songs together where Wayne’s verses weren’t really that tight, The Wayne started building his own label and didn’t need the help of Jay anymore. Somehow, the Carter’s split and now they constantly throw jabs at one another. It’s all out of respect though. Who Wins? This one is also a Draw.
Not only is this Jay-z’s greatest beef, this is one of the greatest battles in Hip Hop history. Nas and Jay-z are two legends who found themselves at a war of words. A beef had been brewing between them for awhile since Jay-z apparently slept with Nas’ baby mother. A few subliminal shots were thrown before Jay-z record Takeover and the rest was history. Takeover sparked one of the greatest battles ever. Nas responded with the track Either which is one of the hardest diss records ever. Jay-z recorded the super ugly freestyle. The world was left with some great lyricism from two great lyricist. Years later, the two men made up and decided to work together. Now Jay and Nas are collaborators and friends. Who won here? Hip Hop.
BONUS – Robert DeNiro
This is a bonus because Robert DeNiro is a G. DeNiro asked Jay-z to record a song for Tribeca film festival. Jay-z agreed to do it but never did it. DeNiro called him a few times and didn’t get a response. When they saw each other in public, Jay tried to embrace DeNiro but DeNiro went off. He called Jay-z rude for not returning his calls. Robert DeNiro is the only person to step to Jay-z in public like that. Who wins this battle? DeNiro, for sure.