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Top 10 Hip-Hop Feuds and Rivalries

VO: Rebecca Brayton
While there's no question that there are many rappers and hip-hoppers make fine music, for some reason, the musical genre also seems to a breeding ground for feuds, beefs and controversies. These can play out in a number ways, either through music, public statements, in interviews and more. At its most extreme, some rivalries have even lead to death. Join as we count down our picks for the top 10 hip-hop feuds and rivalries.

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They’re some of rap’s most well-known beefs. Welcome to, and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 hip-hop feuds and rivalries.

#10 – Azealia Banks versus Jim Jones

When it comes to waging internet wars, Azealia Banks has you covered: she’s gotten into fights with the likes of Perez Hilton, Baauer, Diplo, and Iggy Azalea. But, what started as a heated Twitter exchange was taken to the next level when the femcee released a track mocking rapper Jim Jones. Though their feud seems to be over, Banks is far from done targeting others via the social networking service.

#9 – Ice-T versus Soulja Boy

In this battle between the old school and new school, Ice-T took issue with Soulja Boy’s so-called modern hip-hop sound on “Crank That.” After saying the teen’s garbage music was killing the genre, their spat carried over into video blogs. Though things seemed to fizzle, Ice-T later expressed disapproval about a “Juice” movie remake starring none other than Soulja Boy himself.

#8 – Chris Brown versus Drake

The beef between Breezy and Drizzy supposedly started after Rihanna began dating Drake following her breakup with Chris Brown. What followed wasn’t pretty: angry tweets, a nightclub fight, a lawsuit and several diss tracks. Though the suit was eventually thrown out, Brown was in the news again a few months later thanks to a brawl with Frank Ocean over a parking space.

#7 – Lil’ Kim versus Nicki Minaj

Though Lil’ Kim has feuded with Foxy Brown and Faith Evans, it’s her 21st century beef with Nicki Minaj that’s kept her in the news. Thanks to her flow, flamboyant costumes and big personality, Minaj quickly rose to fame – she also quickly caught Lil Kim’s attention. After the older artist accused Minaj of copping her style, the women exchanged diss tracks, and earned support from others.

#6 – 50 Cent versus The Game

50 Cent has traded lyrical barbs with Jadakiss and fought with Ja Rule’s Murder Inc crew, but it’s his rivalry with The Game that makes our list. It all began with the success of The Game’s debut and Aftermath Entertainment’s delaying of Fiddy’s album release. One deadly radio station confrontation, multiple diss tracks and a few unflattering photo manipulations later and 50 Cent’s G-Unit were also chiming in with songs of their own.

#5 – Eminem versus Benzino

Since he’s often blasted for violent, sexist or homophobic lyrics, it’s not surprising Slim Shady’s had his share of fights, from Mariah Carey to Insane Clown Posse, Everlast to Moby. He most notably grabbed headlines following a row with The Source co-owner and record producer Benzino. After Eminem trashed the magazine in reaction to a poor review, Benzino responded with tracks of his own and claimed the white rapper’s success was damaging to black rappers.

#4 – LL Cool J versus Kool Moe Dee

Though LL later battled with Canibus and Wyclef Jean, we remember his rivalry with Treacherous Tree’s Kool Moe Dee. As a Grammy-winning MC that gained fame in the ‘70s, Kool Moe Dee felt the up-and-coming LL Cool J was a copycat and wasn’t properly paying his respects to older hip hoppers. This prompted a longstanding quarrel that forced LL to take lyrical shots in his own defense.

#3 – Boogie Down Productions versus Juice Crew

Also known as The Bridge Wars, this conflict started brewing after Marley Marl’s Juice Crew claimed Queensbridge was the home of hip hop. KRS-One and his Boogie Down Productions retaliated with their own track about the South Bronx. The two groups continued trading lyrical attacks until the death of one of their DJs. Though the rivalry was briefly revived, it’s generally perceived as being over - but it’s still a significant part of hip-hop history.

#2 – Jay-Z versus Nas

Hatched during the aftermath of the East Coast-West Coast rivalry, this feud pitted two up-and-coming New York rappers against one another. Jay-Z and Nas’ beef started off through songs, then proceeded with verbal public attacks. It was especially notable for their trash-talking “Takeover” and “Ether” tracks, which also received high critical praise. The rappers have since made peace and even worked together.

#1 – Tupac versus Biggie

As the success of west coast hip hop began to rival the output of the east, tensions grew between Bad Boy and Death Row Records. At the center of rap’s biggest feud was Biggie and 2Pac: after Shakur was shot five times, the violence between both sides increased with more shootings, public mocking and diss tracks. Things ended in tragedy when both the Notorious B.I.G. and Tupac were murdered.

Do you agree with our list? What do you think is the most famous hip-hop feud of all time? Be sure to subscribe to for more entertaining top 10s.

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