As much as I joke about the old fogeyness displayed by many of my peers, I still have an automatic rejection to young bloods and new jacks. At 42, I still listen to hip hop music participate as deeply into the culture as I could. I still b-boy and when I can, I do battle. Yes, I am an aging b-boy. After a few freezes and one power move, I can feel it in my joints. I am less of an elder statesman and more of an OG in training. I still got several stripes to earn.
So when I hear that two young bloods are battling it out via the microphone, I usually ignore it. And yes, I am talking about Drake and Meek Mill. I know I am an entire week late which in twitter years means I am a decade behind. This is no think piece either. While I dig Drake and I am familiar with his music, I know nothing of Meek Mill other than his current girlfriend being the gorgeous Nicki Minaj. I actually know her catalog more than that of Meek Mill. So when I first heard “Back to back” by Drake, I was really skeptical. The beat did not move me at all. To be honest, I felt that it was lackluster upon the initial listen.
I didn’t listen to again until I saw everyone’s response. The split was in the middle. Folks my age pretty much felt the same way I did. The younger generations compared it to “Ether” by Nas. I couldn’t see it and discussed this with several cronies. We went back and forth with our preaching to the choir bits of how battle raps aren’t battle raps anymore. So there I was knee deep in my close minded old fogeyness. Then I gave it a second and third listen.
True indeed, the beat is corn flakes. I mean, it could have been harder but yo Drake went in. I mean he went it. He was real clever about it, too. There is no need for me to review it line for line. On top of that, Drake is running with the entire thing and pretty much running a campaign against Meek Mill. While I think Meek Mill will continue to rhyme after this, life will not be the same for him on this. While pound for pound, “Back to Back” is no “Ether,” I will have to say that Drake’s several pronged attack to Meek Mill is unprecedented. Yes, I said it.
I don’t have to go over his moves in this piece either, but let’s be honest Drake set it off, knocked it out the park, buried it and let the crowd run with it. It was beautifully executed and no one can sit back and say, “I don’t think Drake won.” No one. It is completely undebatable. It’s a wrap for Meek Mill in this battle. All he could do is lick his wounds and call it a day.
So in conclusion, the entire thing is levels above “Ether.” I have to confess this. I am sure my peers will hog tie me for this but it’s the truth. In the future, we will be comparing every other battle to this one. So instead of saying “Ethered,” what will we say?
This post comes courtesy of guest writer Dan Tres Omi @DanTresOmi