And Finally Beef Of The Week

CMU Beef Of The Week #42: MC Hammer v Jay-Z

By | Published on Saturday 6 November 2010

Beefs in hip hop are generally quite tedious, and mostly laid on for promotional purposes. This one, however, is brilliant. MC Hammer has penned a new track, and filmed an accompanying video, after taking offence to lyrics added to a new Kanye West track, ‘So Appalled’, by Jay-Z.

Jay-Z rapped this: “And Hammer went broke so you know I’m more focused. I lost 30 mil so I spent another 30, cause unlike Hammer 30 million can’t hurt me”. It’s not clear if Hammer was offended by the slight against his ability to smartly invest money, or Jay-Z’s vulgar display of wealth. Whatever, this week he uploaded the video for his “official Jay-Z diss” track called ‘Better Run Run’. That’s right, it’s an official diss.

The video sees Jay-Z (well, a lookalike) chased through some woods by the devil while Hammer threatens to “knock him out”. Eventually Jay-Z stumbles across Hammer by a lake, who fends off Satan before turning his attention to his rival and – yeah, you know what’s coming – he baptises him.

Following the release of the video, Jay-Z gave his reaction to the track in an interview that will air on DJ Semtex’s 1Xtra show tonight.

Speaking to Semtex, Jay-Z said he wasn’t aware that discussing Hammer’s past money troubles was off limits as a subject: “I didn’t know I was the first person to ever say that. Am I? I mean… I’m not, am I? I know I’ve heard that before. I didn’t know I was the first one to say it. I guess when I say things people believe me so much that they take it a different way, it’s not rap any more at that point. Now it’s like it’s a personal attack”.

He added that in his forthcoming book he’s written about his respect for Hammer: “He’s gonna be embarrassed. I said some really great things about him in the book and about people’s perception of him. I said really great things about him. But, whatever, it is what it is. He took it the wrong way, I didn’t know it wasn’t on the table for discussion. I didn’t know I said anything wrong. I don’t know if I said a lie”.

Asked if he was planning to respond with his own diss song, he said: “No, of course not”.


Watch MC Hammer’s video here:

This Beef Of The Week comes from this edition of the CMU Weekly. Subscribe to the CMU Weekly here.