When I set out to trace the history of the OVO blog I knew I would stumble across some gems, but I had no idea just how many I would find. It happens to be the gift that keeps on giving. The OVO blog is filled with everything from goobery pictures of Drake to actual information that tells the story of his rise and, in rare instances, a combination of the two.
Drake had a colossal year in 2015. He released a project (and a half) and had some huge career milestones, but still, it was his beef with Meek Mill that defined his year. Nobody is still talking about IYRTITL or how he bested The Beatles, but people are still talking about the beef. Shit, his diss track got nominated for a GRAMMY.
He’s taken subtle shots at rappers before, and we know rappers have taken pot shots (word to Common), but in 2015, Drake turned the diss track into a money making machine. It did more for his brand than any Rihanna lap dance ever could. Yeah, 2015 was all about the diss.
The beef, that diss, is what makes this post from April of 2009, where Drake is interviewed by Joe Budden of all people, so interesting. Drake was a young star at the time, but a star none the less. He was still riding high off So Far Gone and his career was just really getting off the ground. To Drake it was all still new, from ladies asking for photos on the street (as you will see in the video) to veterans like Budden giving him attention, and it’s no more clear than when Budden asks him about a diss track.
His response if vastly different from the “Back To Back” Drake we know now:
First and foremost, props to Budden, a veteran who now looks like Nostradamus, for predicting all of this. He knew what Drake would turn into and he knew someone would come at him. Second, this is dramatic irony at its finest. It’s laugh out loud funny watching this video now. This is like that kid from high school who said they'd never drink at college and yet they have nothing but red cups selfies littered across their Facebook page.
“I’m praying we all manage to coexist." “Diss me, you'll never hear a reply.” That’s a far cry from, “Is that a world tour or your girl's tour?”
Drake the human being just wanted to make music, he didn't care about memes or tweets or beef, but somewhere along the way he turned into Drake the superstar. As we all know now, Drake the superstar and Drake the brand is only concerned with one thing - pushing Drake. Once a diss became a smart career move he did it scorched Earth style.
This goes to show, yet again, that Drake has transformed from a human to a brand. I’m not knocking him or hating, many folks in his position would probably have done the same exact thing, it’s just very interesting when you position two very different Drake’s side-by-side. Or should I say, back to back.