Nicki Minaj and Remy Ma‘s ten year beef has recently come to a head, with both of the New York rappers releasing diss tracks aimed at the other – and in doing so have lit up celebrity news feeds around the world. Nicki is said to have started the pair’s rivalry back in 2007, when she seemed to reference Remy in her ‘Playtime is Over’ mixtape, stating that Remy should ‘run it like Chris Brown’. Interestingly, Ma initially said she was cool with this, claiming in an interview that playful barbs are ‘what you do in rap’, and even praising Minaj in a 2014 interview with Hot 97, where she said she had no intention of dragging down a fellow successful black female.
However, since then the two hip hop stars have gone back and forth making subtle swipes at each other on records and in freestyles, although they have never until now explicitly named each other in tracks. Amongst this bubbling animosity there has still been moments of kindness between the two hip hop stars, with Remy taking to Twitter to congratulate Nicki on her win of the Best Female Hip Hop Artist at the BET awards, and Nicki responding graciously. This led to speculation that while the pair may have used each other as targets in their raps, that there was no real bad blood outside the recording studio.
Yet on February 25th, when Remy released the diss track ‘Shether’, this was shown to be untrue. The track is a brutal six minute take down of Minaj, with Ma addressing Minaj’s rumoured buttock implants (and the complications the procedure has led to), Minaj’s shady attitude to relationships which apparently sees her cheating and having affairs, as well as alleging that Minaj’s ex-boyfriend Safaree wrote her lyrics, calling out her fashion choices and even discussing Minaj’s brother’s legal troubles.
Following the release of ‘Shether’, which was recorded over Nas’ ‘Ether’ instrumental, there was a near three week silence from Minaj. All that she did in this period was post a (since deleted) screenshot of an article detailing the ‘disappointing’ sales of Remy Ma and Fat Joe’s recent album ‘Plata O Plomo’ to Instagram, as well as a video where Beyoncé calls her the ‘rap queen’. However, just as fans were speculating that it was too late for Nicki to clap back, she did just that, with her slick Young Money collaboration ‘No Frauds’.
Minaj, Drake and Lil’ Wayne flew all the way to London to shoot a decadent video for the track, which was released as an audio on March 16th, with the video following on April 19th. In it, Minaj accuses Remy of using a ghost writer, of making work that doesn’t sell, of having plastic surgery but still looking like ‘nah’, and claims that Ma abandoned her son when she went to prison in 2008 for the accidental shooting of a friend. Nicki followed ‘No Frauds’ and the two other tracks she simultaneously released (which were also directed at Remy), with an Instagram post in which she challenged Ma to respond within 72 hours.
So far, Remy hasn’t responded, and many hip hop fans who have been following this drama agree that she doesn’t particularly need to, as she has already said everything that she could possibly want to. Also, despite the success of ‘Shether’, Ma says she is not ‘particularly proud’ of it and would have preferred to achieve viral notoriety by working alongside Minaj instead of against her. So, just over three weeks since the video for ‘No Frauds’ was released, it looks like this particular battle is at rest, for now anyway.