The Ultimate Disrespect –
Given that battle rap is based largely on showing that you are better than your opponent while trying to find creative ways of putting him down, there are bound to be people who test the boundaries of how disrespectful and controversial they can be in doing this. While some fans and rappers will hold the position that there are no limits to what you can say to or about your opponent during a battle, many would still argue that there are just certain things that should be left alone. I personally believe that if someone decides to be a battle rapper, they should probably be prepared for anything and everything to be said to or about them, but when battlers decide to attack or belittle the lives, deaths, and misfortunes of the friends and family of their opponents, this can definitely stir up some strong emotions, especially given that the people who are being discussed may not fully understand or agree with what it means when their loved one is involved in the world of battle rap. In this post, we’ll look at three of the most disrespectful performances that have gone down in battle rap history.
#3: Shotgun Suge vs. Calicoe
Smack’s introductions prior to URL battles are a staple of the brand, but it is far from common to see him offering a disclaimer for a battle in these introductions. However, that is exactly what happened at the beginning of the Shotgun Suge and Calicoe battle after Suge spent a great deal of time during the battle making a number of disrespectful comments directed towards the deceased D12 member Proof. As Smack states at the beginning of the video, URL considered vaulting the battle to avoid offending friends and family of Proof, but as word of Suge’s disrespectful performance began to spread, people in Calicoe and Proof’s hometown of Detroit began to pressure URL to release the battle. While Suge has made his aggressiveness part of his trademark delivery and performance, by taking things as far as he did, many in Detroit likely still hold a grudge against Suge for his comments, as seen in the now infamous battle between Arsonal and Calicoe. In Arsonal’s battle, Trick Trick approached the stage after Arsonal dropped Suge’s name in his first round, even though Arsonal had apparently denied being close with Suge when entering the building earlier that night (see the encounter HERE).
#2: Pat Stay vs. Marvwon
As the second entry in this list of disrespectful performances, when Pat Stay faced off against Marvwon (another Detroit based rapper), Pat also brought up Proof’s name, saying that, if he was alive, Proof would be ashamed of Marvwan. Pat went on to slightly backtrack from that statement saying that he knew bringing up Marv’s dead friend was taking things too far, but even without the backtrack, Pat mentioning Proof was one of the least disrespectful things that he said during the battle. In addition to mocking Marvwon for being abandoned by an absentee father, Pat made a number of disparaging remarks and threats of violence in relation to Marvwon’s mentally disabled brother. The comments were especially harsh as Marv had just made some heartfelt comments about the fact that he never knew his father along with talking about his brother in the opening round of the battle, while stating that he donates a significant portion of his income towards finding a cure for autism. While it hardly offsets the damage of what Pat said, Marvwon was able to obtain some retribution in two forms: first, with a victory in the battle against Pat (which some felt was given to Marv as a sympathy vote from the judges) and second, when Calicoe went on to disrespect Pat Stay with excessive aggression and physical contact in his battle against Pat, almost four years after the battle between Pat and Marv. As Calicoe stated (in this INTERVIEW) after his battle with Pat, he felt motivated to disrespect Pat largely because of what Pat had said about Marvwon’s family, with Calicoe giving specific mention of Marv’s brother, as Calicoe said his mother is also disabled and that he would not put up with anybody bringing up her condition in a battle.
#1: Arsonal vs. Mistah F.A.B.
While many battle rappers would prefer to battle in the comfort of their hometown or at least in a neutral environment, Arsonal has almost made a gimmick out of traveling and disrespecting battlers in their own backyards as evidenced by one of the lines he often repeats in his battles starting with, “Once again I’m here, in another nigga’s state…” Despite his history of battling people on their own turf, when Arsonal was set to battle Mistah F.A.B. at KOTD’s Battle of the Bay 7, many people were questioning how far Arsonal was willing to take the disrespect, given that Mistah F.A.B. is held in such high regard in the Bay area, with a long history in the music scene in addition to his activities in the battle scene dating back to the freestyle era. While some thought that F.A.B.’s status as a legend in the Bay might deter Arsonal from getting too personal, Arsonal actually step up his attacks to an entirely new level, which came across on as an even more personal attack due to the fact that many of F.A.B.’s local friends and extended family members came to the battle to show support for him. In addition to Arsonal saying that he would rape F.A.B.’s female family members (including F.A.B.’s daughter and deceased mother), Arsonal went on to discuss the fact that F.A.B.’s father had died of AIDS, with Arsonal utilizing this fact to say that F.A.B.’s father was a disgrace to the rest of the family because of this. Overall, it seemed like Arsonal was deliberately trying to see how disrespectful he could be as he pushed things even further by making a reference to Oscar Grant (someone who had no direct connection to the battle), in an attempt to infuriate the local crowd even more as Grant was a victim of a police shooting that took place in Oakland in 2009. While most people would say that Arsonal crossed a number of lines in this battle, if Arsonal’s ultimate goal was to see how much he could piss off the home crowd, listening to the crowd’s reaction during the battle, it looks like his mission was definitely a success.