After Lil' Wayne Orders Nicki Minaj to Cancel Set, Nas Steps Up, With Hill's Help, at Hot 97 Fest
Hip-hop beefs aren't new to Hot 97's Summer Jam. One of the most notorious feuds was ignited on the Summer Jam stage in 2001. Jay-Z and Nas's rivalry took physical form when Jay threw subliminals towards Nas and Prodigy, saying, "There's a lot of shit going on in rap music... a lot of cats yappin'," before transitioning into "Blueprint" diss cut, "Take Over."
But we weren't expecting the beef to take place at Summer Jam Sunday night (June 3) to be between Hot 97's radio personality Peter Rosenberg and YMCMB's Lil Wayne and Nicki Minaj. If anything, ears were open for Pusha-T, and possibly Wayne, had he showed up during Nicki's set, to deaden or further fuel their recent beef.
Before introducing Kendrick Lamar at Hot 97's festival village show, Rosenberg shared a few words on hip-hop which included Nicki Minaj's Hot 100 top 5 hit, "Starships." "I know there are some chicks here waiting to sing 'Starships' later, I'm not talking to y'all right now, fuck that bullshit," Rosenberg said. "Bullshit! I'm here to talk about real hip-hop shit." Allgedly Wayne caught wind of Rosenberg's words and shut down all Young Money performances, ironically during Tyga's set. Nicki followed Wayne's wishes.
"Wow. U niggaz just fucked up history. But the President has spoken #YMCMB," Nicki tweeted. "I go above and beyond for my fans. But won't ever go against wayne's word. What he says, goes."
Nicki continued to let her Twitter followers know that her performance was going to be one for the books, sharing the slew of surprises she had under her garter belt. "Camron, 2 Chainz, Nas, Lauryn Hill, Beenie Man, Foxy Brown, Lil Wayne, Birdman, Tyga, Jae Millz, Gudda Gudda," she tweeted. DJ Khaled, who's 'We the Best' label is signed to YMCMB, also didn't show.
As many wondered what would be done with the open slot that Nicki had left, the night carried on with today's biggest hip-hop anthem curators taking the stage and invading one another's sets. J. Cole, backed by a live band, called upon Trey Songz to close his refreshing set with "Can't Get Enough." French Montana brought out Wale and Ma$e for Wale's "Slight Work" remix. Maybach Music Group's bossman and MVP, Rick Ross and Meek Mill, later joined the stage to perform anthems, "Imma Boss" and "Stay Schemin." Surprisingly, MMG's set wasn't the set that stole the show. Most concert-goers got hyped in the beginning of hits, like Ross' "Rich Forever" and "B.M.F.," but calmed after a minute or so into each.
Pusha-T and 2 Chainz joined Big Sean close to the end of his set to perform G.O.O.D. Music's "Mercy" for the first time. Although, Kanye West wasn't in attendance -- currently on the U.K. leg of his and Jay's 'Watch the Throne' tour -- the crowd made 'Ye proud by reciting his bars to a T. Big Sean took time out of set for an emoment when introducing his inspiration, his mother, Myra Anderson.
2 Chainz, who should have been on the bill, got the second loudest response from concert-goers, stepping up and off stage through out the night. Chainz joined Young Jeezy for "Supafreak" prior to Big Sean's set, which also included a performance of his first solo track, "Riot."
Jeezy represented for the south as he rolled out hit after hit. The snowman proved you could win over the crowd with solo cuts "Who Dat," "Put On," "Lose My Mind," "Go Getta," keeping the crowd on their feet long before closing his set with guests, T.I., Ne-Yo and 2 Chainz.
Hot 97's DJs left a hefty dent in the night's show as well. Mister Cee had everyone in the stadium, from left to right, swaying back and forth with an impeccable set filled of classics and new cuts. Funkmaster Flex, threw not-so subliminal shots at Nicki Minaj through out his set. "We ain't fucking with commercial rappers no more. If you lost the fuckin streets, it's your fault. If you don't go gold, it's your fault. I'm dedicated to be tearing you down," Flex said. "We gon' show you, mama. You think you didn't sell any records this time?"
But the night's most memorable moment belonged to Nas and Lauryn Hill. Nasir Jones was scheduled to only perform one song but with an open slot to fill due to Nicki's no-show, the Queens rapper stepped up and took the stage, only to shock the stadium with a guest appearance by Ms. Hill.
After Nas performed a few of his own hits ("Bravehearts," "Made You Look," and "Hate Me Now"), Lauryn Hill walked out on stage as DJ Green Latern dropped the Fugees' classic, "Ready Or Not." Ms. Hill, who awed NYC with a headlining show at Highline Ballroom the night before (Sat., June 2) -- continued to compel with nostalgic cuts such as "Lost Ones" and her collaborative track with Nas, "If I Ruled the World."
Despite Nicki Minaj's no-show, Hot 97, against odds, delivered a memorable show and a historical performance by one of hip-hop's finest female emcees.