The long-running feud between Kanye West and Jay-Z has reportedly deepened, with West splitting with Jay-Z's streaming service, Tidal, over a money dispute. Tidal has, in turn, threatened to sue Kanye if he teams up with another service.
However, despite rumors that the latest rift between Kanye and Jay-Z stemmed directly from Jay-Z dissing Kanye in his latest album, 4:44, sources close to the rappers told TMZ that Kanye's money dispute with Tidal has been festering since after he accused the streaming service of owing him more than $3 million and refusing to pay.
TMZ reported early on Sunday that about a month ago, Kanye's attorney sent a letter to Tidal, saying that Kanye had terminated his contract with the streaming service because the company was in breach of contract.
Tidal responded by convening a meeting with Kanye's lawyers to resolve the issue, but efforts to reach a compromise failed. Kanye's lawyer than sent another letter to Tidal, declaring that Kanye had terminated the contract with the company.
Kanye's first letter to Tidal stating his decision to split with the streaming service was sent long before Jay-Z released his 4:44 album in which he dissed Kanye, sources told TMZ. The sources also said that Kanye had no advance knowledge of the lyrics of the track "kill Jay Z" in the album 4:44 where Jay-Z appears to call Kanye insane and alluded to a dispute over an alleged $20 million loan.
"I know people backstab you, I feel bad too/ But this fuck everybody attitude ain't natural/ But you ain't the same, this ain't KumbaYe/ But you got hurt because you did cool by 'Ye/ You gave him 20 million without thinkin'/ He gave you 20 minutes on stage, fuck was he thinkin'?/ 'Fuck wrong with everybody?' is what you sayin'/ But if everybody's crazy, you're the one that's insane."Observers noted that Jay-Z's lyrics that "You gave him 20 million without thinkin'/He gave you 20 minutes on stage," appears to be a reference to the dispute between Kanye and Jay-Z's Tidal streaming service that escalated after the release of Kanye's latest album, The Life of Pablo.
TMZ reported that Kanye claims that his album, The Life of Pablo, increased Tidal's subscribers by about 1.5 million and that he was supposed to receive a substantial bonus for it, but Tidal has refused to pay.
Kanye also claims that Tidal has refused to reimburse him for music videos.
The Daily Beast reported that Tidal accused Kanye of withholding some music videos in violation of their contractual agreement. Kanye responded that he would deliver the remaining videos as soon as Tidal pays outstanding sums owed. Tidal, for its part, said that despite Kanye's letter that he had terminated the contract, the company still considers that it has an exclusive contract with Kanye and that they would sue him for failing to fulfill his contractual obligations if he leaves for another streaming service.
Kanye, according to TMZ, has said that he is walking away from Tidal and that he would countersue if Tidal sues him.
Kanye's split with Tidal is the latest incident in the long-running feud between Kanye and his mentor Jay-Z. Kanye railed against Jay-Z during a performance at Seattle's KeyArena as part of his recent Saint Pablo tour. He accused Jay-Z and Beyonce of failing to call his family after Kim Kardashian's robbery ordeal in Paris.
"Don't call me, after [Kim's] robbery, and say 'How you feelin'?' You wanna know how I'm feeling? Come by the house. Bring the kids by the house, like we brothers… Our kids ain't never even played together."The strained relationship between the two rappers was highlighted in a recent Page Six report which quoted a source close to the two saying that Jay-Z has become sick and tired of West's antics and that the last straw for Jay-Z was Kanye's rant at his Saint Pablo concert.
The source told Page Six that Jay-Z "can't stand" Kanye.
"He [Jay-Z] looks at him [West] as this crazy, eccentric mother****r he can tolerate in small doses," the source told Page Six. "Kanye is a nut job. Everyone knows that."
The source said that Jay-Z only tolerated West during the tour for their 2011 album Watch the Throne, because "there was so much money to be made."
The source added that "Jay was like, 'We're going to do a tour to bring in millions of dollars. I can tolerate that.'"
[Featured Image by Scott Gries/Getty Images]