Over the weekend, Rap-A-Lot Records CEO and Houston rap impresario J. Prince told DTLR Radio that he had advised Drake not to respond to “The Story Of Adidon,” telling the Canadian rapper not to develop what he called a “pig pen mentality” in response to their ongoing feud.
Of course, while his comments were rooted in showing respect for Pusha and by extension Kanye West, after “Adidon” crossed lines Prince feels should have been sacred, the peanut gallery that is Twitter wasn’t going to let that information stop them from ridiculing Drake as running to hide behind the street heavy figure who originally helped put him on in the rap game. However, according to Prince, he was the one who called Drake, advising him not to release the diss.
This morning, he elaborated via an interview with Sway In The Morning that the reason he did so was that the return fire was so vicious that it would have ended Kanye West and Pusha T’s careers and hurt their families, so he advised the Canadian rapper to put it on ice.
In the original interview, Prince pointed out that Pusha’s snipes at Drake’s mother, father, and producer, 40 Shebib, were “disrespectful” and crossed lines, saying, “Imagine if we got in a fight and I go and whoop your momma’s ass, I hit your daddy in the jaw… I call it a pig pen mentality. I made an OG call to Drake, saying, ‘I don’t want you to respond to this, because… pigs turn into hogs and hogs get slaughtered.'”
In expanding on those comments for Sway, he pointed out that he “saw this going into a place that I feel would have ended his career if he had put out the song that he had on him. And definitely, it would have hurt families and we not in it for that. We not in business to tear our fellow man down to that extent.” He compared the ongoing escalation to one of the most notorious beefs in hip-hop: “I witnessed a lot of this happened when Biggie and Tupac were in the midst of battle. And you wonder, ‘How’d this thing go here?’ This is how they go there, when your momma and your daddy and your friends start feeling some kind of way, before you know it, it’s going down.”
J. Prince is well-respected in Houston hip-hop circles as CEO and founder of Rap-A-Lot Records, as well as for occupying a nebulously murky reputation as a street-heavy businessman in a similar vein of Suge Knight (before he got knocked out). The intimidating nature of his reputation was summed-up by comedian Roy Wood, Jr. on Twitter, with an anecdote about being chased out of Houston after a prank call gone wrong. Wood claims that the resulting conversation “made me not only leave the studio but also the city of Houston,” when his call “posing as the owner of a Mom & Pop record store criticizing Rap-A-Lot records not cranking out as many hits as they used to” turned into a promised “face-to-face” conversation that sent Wood scurrying from the recording booth and back to the airport.
Even then, he claims, “even in the sky I didn’t feel safe. I felt like J Prince was going to slide out an overhead bin like “Yeahhhh Ngga. Where you at?” Even now 12 years later, I’m still convinced J. Prince will run up on me at Rite Aid “I see you getting them pills, where you at?”
While many will likely speculate — and have — that J. Prince called off the beef to protect Drake from Pusha’s incisive onslaught of gossip-filled revelations, the real losers in all of this are probably the fans who’ve been disappointed by Prince’s cancelation of Drake’s “Adidon” reply. However, no one involved seems to be all that excited at the prospect of risking the ire of Drake’s OG, least of all Drake himself, so if J. Prince says the song stays in the vault, that’s probably where it will stay for a good, long while.