Kendrick Lamar doesn't let the fear of burning bridges keep him from speaking his mind.
Most of the rapper's hip-hop targets took it in stride, though. And as Revolt TV pointed out (and Diddy retweeted), "Hip Hop was born out of competition and raised by battles. This is what Music needs. More people who want to be the BEST not BEST FRIENDS."
True. And let's be honest, Kendrick is far from the first person whose lyrical lash-out took down a foe! Here are five more celeb feuds addressed through song.
Pitbull vs. Lindsay Lohan: The rapper name-checked Linds in his 2011 hit "Give Me Everything." On lyrics, trying to make a point that he's always on his game, Pit explicitly rapped, "I got it locked up like Lindsay Lohan." The Mean Girls star first sued in August 2011, objecting to the negative connotation of the "locked up like Lindsay Lohan" line. In January 2013, a federal judge dismissed the suit. Pitbull was "very pleased," his lawyer said. "He felt it was very important to address this head on to protect his right and the rights of other artist. He decided to fight this."
Eminem vs. Mariah Carey and Nick Cannon: Em's made multiple references to what he says was a brief relationship with Mariah. She, however, denies they were ever romantically involved. In his 2009 song "Bagpipes From Baghdad," the rapper flat-out rapped at Mariah's hubby, "Nick Cannon better back the f--k up/ I'm not playin'/ I want her back, you punk." He also trashed Mariah and Nick by name in "The Warning." But later that year, Nick insisted there was no longer any bad blood between him and Em. "I feel exactly the same way by it and stick by everything, but I think it's one of those things where it becomes that it's not really that big of a deal, you know?" he told Entertainment Weekly. "I never even considered it as beef," he said. "It's not beef. It's just, Hey, I heard the record. I said what I had to say."
Taylor Swift vs. John Mayer: In 2010, not long after Taylor and John dated briefly, the country-pop princess released a track called "Dear John" on her Speak Now album. The lyrics bashed a man and his "sick need to give love and take it away" and a girl looking "back with regret how I ignored how they said run as fast as you can." She later told Glamour magazine it was "presumptuous" of John to think the song was written about him, adding, "I never disclose who my songs are about."
In 2013, John seemed to fire back at Ms. Swift with his song "Paper Doll." Despite the song's multiple references to Taylor's 22 album, John was quick to play coy when the meaning of his lyrics came into question. "Songwriters write songs because of people, about people," he told Today. "Anything someone else wrote is their reception of a song. I don't get involved in it. It's none of my business."
Jay Z vs. Nas: The rappers feud began in the aftermath of the East Coast-West Coast hip-hop rivalry of the '90s. After some initial disses in 2001, Nas addressed his beef with Jay Z head-on in "Ether," explicitly saying, "F--k Jay Z" and calling him "Gay Z." Hov retaliated with "Supa Ugly," and the drama continued on up through 2005. Finally, in 2006, the feud officially came to an end with both Nas and Jay recording, touring and performing together.
Justin Timberlake vs. Britney Spears: In 2002, shortly after his breakup from Britney, Justin released "Cry Me a River." Singing "Your bridges were burned/ And now it's your turn/ To cry, cry me a river," and noting, "It wasn't like you only talked to him and you know it," J.T. made it pretty clear he felt whoever the song was about had wronged him. The girl cast in his video, whose face wasn't shown, looked shockingly similar to Ms. Spears. Britney released "Everytime" in 2004, singing, "What have I done/ You seem to move on easy," and asking, "Please forgive me/ My weakness caused you pain, and this song's my sorry." She didn't confirm that her ex was the subject of the song, but all signs point to yes.