Jay Z and Nicki Minaj’s boyfriend, Nas, are presently on good terms and are remarkably close associates, with the latter currently signed to Def Jam Recordings, which was once headed by Beyonce’s husband. However, their relationship hasn’t always been great and at one point involved some serious lyrical exchanges which went on for a decade.
Their feud began in 1996, which is coincidentally the same year in which rapper Tupac Shakur died. Fortunately, their differences did not spill over to the streets as the approach was different. They brought on an era of rap stars ‘killing each other’ lyrically and allowing the fans to judge for themselves. The Drake and Meek Mill feud is an example of this.
How Their Feud Started
The crazy feud between Nicki Minaj’s boyfriend, Nas, and Jay Z started in 1996 after the former, who was at the time one of the best rappers in the industry pulled a no-show to include some lines for Hova’s upcoming album Reasonable Doubt. However, a line from one of his songs that read “I’m out for presidents to represent me” was included. The inclusion without his consent upset the Life Is Good rapper, and his displeasure was conveyed in his next song The Message, which featured the line, “Lex with TV sets the minimum.”
He had apparently seen Jay Z driving around in a Lexus full of TVs and wanted to convey the message that having a Lexus was the bare minimum for any self-respecting artist, stating that he had gotten rid of his. He said this while on an interview with Complex. In 1999, two years after Tupac Shakur’s death, Nas released I Am, an album which included the track “We Will Survive.” It paid tribute to the deceased rapper while taking a jab at Jay Z for proclaiming himself, ‘King Of New York.’ The verse read as follows.
“It used to be fun, makin records to see your response/But, now competition is none, now that you’re gone/And these n–as is wrong — using your name in vain/And they claim to be New York’s king?/It ain’t about that.”
Diss tracks and jabs between the two went on for years, but their beef was officially squashed in 2005 after Nas made an appearance on one of Jay Z’s concerts. The two performed each other’s songs, and the crowd went crazy. He was soon after signed to Def Jam and got a multi-million dollar contract for his first albums.