Chart Beat

Pusha T & Drake Beef Highlights Social 50 Chart Gains

Pusha T
Carl Timpone/BFA/REX/Shutterstock

Pusha T performs during Governors Ball on June 2, 2018 in New York.  

Also, Rhymefest debuts at No. 43 after injecting himself into the spat by going after Kanye West.

A pair of rap beefs mark gains on Billboard’s Social 50 chart dated June 9, with Pusha T leading the charge at No. 7.

The Social 50 is powered by data tracked by music analytics company Next Big Sound and ranks the most popular artists on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Wikipedia and Tumblr. The chart's methodology blends weekly additions of friends/fans/followers along with artist page views and engagement. The chart’s latest tracking week ended May 31.

Pusha T debuts on the chart at No. 7 amid the release of new album Daytona (which bows at No. 3 on the Billboard 200), but that’s not all that pushes him to his first week on the ranking. Following the release of “Infrared,” a Daytona track that disses Drake, the latter rapper turned around and unleashed “Duppy Freestyle” in response on May 25.

Not to be outdone, Pusha T followed with “The Story of Adidon” on May 29. The song, among its many claims, alleges that Drake had a child with Sophie Brussaux last year.

The combined social media attention drove a flurry of activity to Pusha T’s accounts. He garnered 159,000 Wikipedia views (a 2,580 percent boost) and was mentioned 249,000 times on Twitter (up 2,462 percent), according to Next Big Sound.

Of course, Drake’s own posts about the beef shot him back onto the chart, re-entering at No. 16 (his first time on the Social 50 since the April 7-dated list). Though his Wikipedia views were far below Pusha T’s, he exceeded the rapper in Twitter mentions, scoring 364,000 in all (up 942 percent).

Meanwhile, Chicago rapper Rhymefest returns to the Billboard charts for the first time since 2010 following a series of tweets directed at Kanye West.

Rhymefest, who is known for his work with West (including as the co-writer of West’s “Jesus Walks”) along with his solo material and activism in Chicago, inserted himself into the Drake-Pusha T controversy following the former’s release of “Duppy Freestyle.” Following Drake’s fake invoicing of Pusha after the song (referencing a lyric in “Duppy”), Rhymefest tweeted at the rapper, “when G.O.O.D. Music sends the money they owe you, will you please help us rebuild Kanye’s mothers house for the youth of Chicago. I spoke to Kanye about it. His response was 'fuck the youth of Chicago.’”

West’s wife, Kim Kardashian, defended her husband following Rhymefest’s tweets, and she disinvited him from visiting the couple in Wyoming in the future.

Rhymefest debuts at No. 39 on the Social 50, gathering 62,000 Twitter mentions and 55,000 retweets, both up significant percentages (88,879 percent and 496,000 percent, respectively) from negligible amounts previously.