Thursday night, Drake stirred up controversy by calling out Joe Budden on stage during the Dallas stop on his Summer Sixteen tour. The two have been feuding for the past few weeks, and even shots on wax (Budden with several diss tracks and podcasts and Drake with “No Shopping”). “I should’ve brought Joe Budden up here and let him do ‘Pump It Up’ one time tonight. Pump, pump, pump it up. Fuck them niggas, man,” Drake said.
This escalation is what many of us—Joe especially—have been hoping for, and it’s also a reminder that Drake is no stranger to on-stage pettiness. Sometimes he’s the instigator, and at other times he’s just responding to his antagonists. Regardless, it always makes for some fun fireworks. From calling out Lil Kim to savagely memeing Meek Mill at OVO Fest, when Drake wants to instigate, he doesn’t hold back. With his Summer Sixteen tour gearing up, we compiled a brief history of Drake’s pettiest on stage moments.
Drake vs. Lil Kim: Before Nicki Minaj was a superstar, she and Lil Kim were involved in a massive back-and-forth over their career and style similarities. Drake, being the man that he is, decided to call Kim out on behalf of Nicki. He popped up on stage at one of her shows in 2010 to perform his verse on “BedRock,” but refused to leave the stage until he spoke his peace. “I just wanna say that you the baddest woman to ever do this rap shit,” he said. “I don’t give a fuck what Lil Kim or nobody else talking about, you the baddest chick to do this shit. Remember I said that.”
Drake vs. Common: Drake and Common exchanged words in 2011 over Drake’s public courtship of Serena Williams, who had previously been involved with Common. The Chicago MC was clearly feeling some type of way about it, because he took some pot shots at Drake on the song “Sweet,” from his 2011 album The Dreamer/The Believer. The lines made of fun of Drake for singing too much. Drake addressed the criticism while on stage at Power 106’s Cali Christmas in Los Angeles. “I will never stop doing this for ya’ll,” he told the crowd. “I don’t give a fuck. If you got something to say to me, say it to my motherfucking face, nigga. Just cause I sing, I’m not no bitch. If you got something to say, I’m right here.” They would go on to exchange disses on separate mixes of Rick Ross’ “Stay Schemin'” before terminating the beef.
Drake vs. Pusha T: Pusha T and Drake’s beef spawned from Pusha and Lil Wayne’s beef. After Pusha implied that Drake was “signed to one nigga that’s signed to another nigga that’s signed to three niggas/Now that’s bad luck” on “Exodus 23:1,” Drake responded during his Club Paradise tour in May 2012. “D.C., can I ask y’all a question? How come every time I see these niggas out, it’s daps and hugs, but when I hear about them later it’s raps and thugs?” he asked. “If you had ill 16s when I was 16 and then your shit flopped and you switched teams, don’t fucking talk to me, my nigga. If you came here tonight with your real friends and not your fake friends, make some motherfucking noise.” His comments start around the 51-minute mark.
Drake vs. a Drake Impersonator: In January 2015, comedian Red Grant’s set included a Drake impersonation. But he didn’t realize that Drake was in the audience watching. A few minutes in, Drake took to the stage to clown Grant for his dancing skills. “What the fuck kind of impression is that?” he asked. “That shit is like an Omarion-Chris Brown together shit. That’s not me.” Luckily, this one was all in good fun. The pair ended up dancing together to “0-100/The Catch Up” and “Believe Me.”
Drake vs. Chris Brown: Drake and Chris Brown have had an on-again-off-again relationship for years. Back in February 2015, they were certainly “off.” During a concert in Auckland, New Zealand, Drake sent shots at Brown by changing up the words to “Energy.” “I got R&B niggas that I gotta act like I like, but my acting days are over, fuck them niggas for life,” he rapped. Earlier that day, Brown had appeared on Hot 97 with Tyga, where both men made fun of Drake and mocked the sound of his voice. Drake returned the favor real quick.
Drake vs. Meek Mill: After a very public and dramatic exchange of words and diss tracks, Drake took the stage at OVO Fest 2015 feeling triumphant, and made those feelings clear by showing up in a “Free Meek Mill” T-shirt. He opened up his set with performances of “Charged Up” and “Back to Back,” and projected a series of Meek Mill memes on the backdrop behind him. The whole thing was a complete ether of his Philly rival. Drake’s summary of the night’s events? “You did it to yourself, boy. I never let nobody disrespect my city.” That one had to hurt.
Drake vs. Tory Lanez and Tyga: He might have already moved on to Joe Budden, but just a day before Thursday’s comments, Drake came at his imitators just as hard. While on stage in Austin, Texas, Drake altered one of the lines to “Summer Sixteen” to take on Tory Lanez and Tyga. “All you boys doing fake ‘Controllas’ wanna be me a little,” he rapped, referencing the dancehall-indebted stand-out on Views. Both Lanez (“Luv”) and Tyga (“1 of 1”) have their own dancehall singles out in the wake of “Controlla” (Lanez also has own remix to “Controlla”) and clearly Drake isn’t feeling the vibe.