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Bars, lies and reference tapes: Drake vs. Hot 97

"You see, they telling lies on Hot 97," announced Drake.

Robb D. Cohen // Retna Ltd.

Drake and Hot 97, ha. Pardon the informal tone, but the two mentioned subjects mentioned share a relationship that is as sour as pack of Sour Patch. Although it’s been brewing for years, more appropriately summer ’15, this fact reappeared on the stage of Madison Square Garden last night (August 4), when Drake pulled up with his "Summer Sixteen" tour alongside Future. Aside from a stellar show, the most-talked about moment appeared when Drake took to the stage and fired a freestyle that came with pellets for the Big Apple radio station Hot 97 and its marquee DJ, Funkmaster Flex.

"You see, they telling lies on Hot 97, that’s how it goes," announced Drizzy. "I told ’em ‘fire Funk Flex and then I’ll come and do your show."

Drake’s ire toward the station isn’t without reasoning. It was around this time a year ago when Funkmaster Flex attempted to air out the Toronto star by leaking the infamous Quentin Miller reference tracks from the If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late sessions. Flex, who jumped into the middle of Drake and Meek Mill’s dust up last year and sided with the latter, released four reference songs from Miller for Drake, including "Know Yourself," "Used To," "10 Bands," and the song behind the whole drama "R.I.C.O."

Of course, Drake clapped back with songs like "Charged Up," where he references DJ Clue? as the originator of the signature "bomb" tag, and the Grammy nominated “Back to Back.” Prior to Flex’s interjection, Drake’s stance with Hot 97 was also shaky. Flex meddled further, hyping Meek’s since forgotten "Wanna Know," which came and went. This prompted Drake’s fanbase to launch a petition to get rid of Flex from the airwaves, while Charlamagne Tha God dragged the legendary DJ with a "Donkey of the Day" segment.

But Drake's gripe isn't just with Flex. Earlier this week, Hot 97’s Ebro claimed that he and Drizzy had a conversation about the rapper's brewing feud (or lack thereof) with Joe Budden, which led to this quote: "I [Ebro] told Drake that I heard the rumor was Eminem was going to gear up to come after him. He laughed. He was like, 'That’s not gonna happen.’ He’s like, 'He’d never do that. And if he did, I got something for him, too.'"

A quick aside, the one emoji that summarized this exchange was… (again, pardon the informal tone).

If that didn’t fuel a jolt of excitement, Ebro killed the joy (and noise) by admitting that for some reason he made the entire thing up. Why tell that kind of story on the air without ending it with a “just kidding” or, in the words of Welven Da Great "got 'em," is a question that’s on everyone’s minds. But trolls will be trolls. So as this war between Drizzy and Hot 97 goes, the debris has far from settled.

But as the dust lingers, Drake continues to power through the drama like a walking umbrella. His album Views has spent a whopping 12 weeks atop the Billboard 200 chart and he reportedly prepping a joint album with Kanye West. "Plus me and Kanye we just left out the studio," he announced last night (August 5) in the aforementioned freestyle. "My first night in the Garden I’m feeling like D-Rose [Derrick Rose]."

Pump, pump, pump it up.

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