It’s no secret that making it in the music industry is hard as hell and always has been. Not only do you have to be at least somewhat talented, but you have to know the right people, usually get signed to a major record label, sell albums, book tours, collab with the right people, and keep your sound fresh enough to keep your fans from falling off. As if that wasn’t hard enough, today’s audiences have to keep their fans engaged via social media- and nothing engages people more on social media than a good, old-fashioned rap beef. Naturally, it was only a matter of time before 50 Cent and Tekashi 6ix9ine, two of the internet’s reigning kings of pettiness (as well as two of New York’s best-known rappers), teamed up for “Get the Strap,” what is sure to be one of 2018’s most talked-about (and tweeted about) collabs.
Despite being over two decades apart in age, 50 and 6ix9ine have more in common than most people realize. Both are rappers with distinct sounds (obviously). Both are from New York. Both are no stranger to controversy. And both love stirring the pot on the internet and social media. In fact, 50 Cent was one of the first rappers to use the internet to trash talk his rival Ja Rule back in 2003. Since then, his internet beefs have included, but are not limited to, Vivica A. Fox (and many of his other exes), Papoose, Wendy Williams, Taco Bell, his own son Marquise, Floyd Mayweather Jr, and most recently, Terry Crews and an autistic airport worker (the last two of which he has since apologized for).
While the internet helped make 50 famous, Tekashi 6ix9ine literally became famous because of the internet after the video to his song, “Gummo,” went viral. Most of the drama surrounding the rapper’s shirt career has played out extensively on social media including his issues with Lil Reese, Chief Keef, and others, as well as numerous videos of his infamous altercations.
With all their tweeting/posting/sharing, perhaps the artists are preparing for a future White House ticket or perhaps they know what publicity experts have known since the beginning of time: controversy sells.
Does the song have what it takes to break the internet? Only time will tell, but in the meantime, expect a lot of trash talking as the unlikely east coast duo provide audiences with the guilty late-summer pleasure we’ve all been craving.