The digs, in song and on social media, continued a pattern of minor, direct and indirect offenses between the two that had existed for years, with Drake’s musical beef relationship with Pusha-T, a Western subsidiary, seemingly coagulating irrevocably 2018.
In the years that followed, the artists parted ways, even if they occasionally bumped their heads online and on records. West hugged former President Donald J. Trump, ran an ill-fated presidential run, and turned to gospel. In October 2019 he released a Christian album called “Jesus Is King”. He swore not to curse in his music anymore, he kept a promise with “Donda” and even censored his guests.
Drake, meanwhile, released a steady stream of music, though it made itself less and less common. In spring 2020, the rapper followed the single “Toosie Slide”, which reached number 1 on the Billboard Hot 100, with a surprising mixtape, “Dark Lane Demo Tapes”, with songs that had been leaked online. In the summer he promised a studio album, and the budding lead single “Laugh Now Cry Later” landed at number two in August. But the album never came out; Another holdover, the three-song EP “Scary Hours 2”, followed in March and led to another No. 1 single (“What’s Next”).
After months of only cryptic updates on the album’s status, a collision course with West seemed inevitable as summer ended and the two A-list rappers reappeared. When West toured with an ongoing “Donda,” Drake appeared to be claiming a September 3rd release late last month a lo-fi ad with a guerrilla look that hit during an ESPN “SportsCenter” broadcast.
And on a Trippie Redd track titled “Betrayal” the rapper indicated that the hustle and bustle around West’s “Donda” would not affect its final release date. This time Drake rapped, “It’s set in stone.”