Rappers do anything for clout; or likes, laughs and record sales. They say any publicity is good publicity, and in the 2010s, rappers have been taking that adage to heart as trolling has become a way of life.
Trolling is nothing new to hip-hop. Beastie Boys’ Mike D famously wore a Volkswagen emblem on a chain in the 1980s as a stab at the Mercedes Benz logo craze. Who remembers when Ol’ Dirty Bastard famously went to pick up food stamps in a limo? While trolling used to be take more effort, the emergence of social media platforms over the last decade has made it much more easier for rappers to toss out cynical lures that are immediately gobbled up by the masses.
In the last few years it's only been more prevalent, as rappers realize a good troll can be as fruitful as a hit record. 50 Cent has thrived off being one of the biggest trolls in the industry and constantly uses his Instagram account to stir the pot. Drake is well-known for cleverly trolling opponents in the rap game and on the basketball court.
As we cross over to 2020, XXL compiles a list of some of the most unforgettable troll moments of the past 10 years.
Lil B Drops I’m Gay Album
Following constant questions about his sexuality, Lil B announced he was naming his fifth album I’m Gay. The controversial title was criticized and even reportedly caused the Cali rapper to receive death threats. The Based God later explained his use of the word “gay” actually meant happy. He later added (I’m Happy) as a subtitle way to drive home his point.
Tyler, The Creator Fakes Earl Sweatshirt’s Return
Earl Sweatshirt being sent to Coral Reef Academy in Samoa just as Odd Future was starting to take off had fans anxiously awaiting his return. In November 2011, Tyler, The Creator had heads going crazy after telling a fan on Formspring, "Yeah, he is [back], he landed in L.A. the other day."
Wolf later doubled down on Twitter, saying he and Earl were in the studio, which caused a frenzy on the social media app. However, he later revealed he was pulling fans’ legs.
“Thebe Said That I Need The Award For Biggest Troll Of 2011,” he posted on Twitter.
He later added, “Wanted To Tell You Guys Again That I Am Troll Of 2011” and “[Earl] Is Trending? Sick! He’s Stoked Haha, Awkward For Him.”
Daylyt Attempts to Take Dump Onstage During Battle
Battler rapper Daylyt has pulled off many spectacles during his career, but none match the troll move he attempted when he actually tried to take a dump onstage while going against Real Deal in Phoenix.
After getting booed by the crowd, Day warned, "If I hear two more boos, I'ma boo boo on stage."
When the boos persisted, he proceeded to cop a squat on the stage and attempt to defecate for the shocked onlookers. Security intervened and he was removed from the premises by police.
A$AP Rocky Teases Joint Project With Rod Stewart
In 2015, A$AP Rocky really trolled heads into thinking he was dropping a joint mixtape with rock legend Rod Stewart.
The two collaborated on the song “Everyday” that year and Rocky later told Vulture during an interview, "Me and Rod Stewart have a mixtape coming out."
The project even supposedly had a title. “It's called Born to be Pretty and it's definitely a panty-dropper,” he added. “Droppin' this summer. You already know."
After the flurry of anticipation that followed, the Harlem rapper had to admit the hoax on Twitter.
“THE ROD STEWART MIXTAPE WAS SAID AS A JOKE, AS FUNNY AND INTERESTING AS IT WOULD BE, UNFORTUNATELY, ‘BORN TO BE PRETTY’ IS NOT REAL, LOL,” he posted.
Young Thug Drops Barter 6
Lil Wayne and Young Thug’s beef began after Birdman took the Atlanta rapper under his wing while he and Tunechi squared away their issues in court. The rift led to Thugger naming his 2015 mixtape Barter 6. Initially titled Carter 6 after Wayne’s then on-hold album series, the YSL rapper was threatened with a lawsuit and eventually settled on the title Barter 6. Thugger claimed he was paying homage with the title, but with the tension in the air between the two rappers, most people saw it as a clear troll move.
Nick Minaj Makes Fans Believe She’s Pregnant
Nicki really had the Barbz going nuts when she posted a photo of her appearing to be in her third trimester on Instagram in 2017.
“Y'all so childish Omgskibbidybopbopghjhddfnjj - I was gonna wait to share the news but...,” she captioned the photo.
Of course, the pic turned out to be a fake. But Nicki surely had a good laugh making fans believe she was with child for a minute.
Lil Pump’s Harvard University Ties
Rumors of Lil Pump being some kind of teen savant who dropped out of Harvard University to be a SoundCloud rapper circulated the Internet in 2017.
The South Florida rapper even added fuel to the rumors, typing on Twitter in 2017, “I REALLY DID DROP OUT OF HARVARD TO SAVE THE RAP GAME.”
Of course, this turned out not to be true, but Jet Ski kept the troll going by naming his 2019 album Harverd Dropout. He even claimed months later he was giving the commencement speech at Harvard’s graduation, which the school later denied.
6ix9ine Pulls Up in Chicago’s O Block
In the midst of his beef with several rappers in Chicago, Tekashi decided to pull off one of his ultimate troll moves by taking a trip to the Windy City. Along with giving back to the less fortunate, he also went to the city’s infamous O Block.
“This O Block right here? I should call this shit no block. It’s 10 o’clock, where the fuck y’all niggas at?” he said in a video clip while standing on a deserted street corner.
Security camera footage later revealed the Brooklyn rapper actually pulled up around 3 a.m. and stayed for less than a minute.
Kanye West Promises Bars, Delivers Gibberish
‘Ye was on one in early 2018. In full-on MAGA mode and facing criticism from the hip-hop community left and right, the controversial MC decided to make a statement.
“I'm going to drop a song with a verse that will bring Ebro the closure he's been seeking. The bars. It’s called Lift Yourself,” Kanye tweeted.
The song West ended up delivering was head-scratching to say the least and was clearly a “Got Eeem” moment for the rapper.
"What they don't realize though, this next verse? This next verse, though? These bars. Watch this…poopity scoop, scooptity woop, woopity, scoopty poop," Kanye curiously rhymes on the track.
50 Cent Buys Ja Rule Tickets So Show Will Look Empty
You can’t out-petty 50 Cent. In October 2018, he decided to take a jab at his nemesis Ja Rule by claiming he’d bought 200 seats in the front row of Ja’s concert so the show would look empty.
When Fif doubled down on his claim months later during an interview, Ja later fired back on Instagram calling 50 a pathological liar and offering $10,000 to anyone with evidence of the empty seats that were supposedly purchased.
Drake Sends Invoice to G.O.O.D. Music
Drake and Pusha-T’s beef reached fever pitch in the spring of 2018. After King Push sent shots at Drake on the Daytona track “Infrared,” Aubrey returned the shots on his “Duppy Freestyle.” On the track, the OVO rapper spits, “Tell 'Ye we got a invoice coming to you/Considering that we just sold another 20 for you," insinuating Pusha owes him a debt for entertaining the beef and surely helping him with album sales.
As an added troll, he sent Push’s label G.O.O.D. Music an invoice for $100,000 for “promotional assistance and career reviving”
50 “The Loan Shark” Cent Claims Everyone Owns Him Money
In 2019, we learned 50 Cent is not a person to whom you want to owe money. It started with Teairra Mari, who owed Fif $30,000 via a lawsuit verdict. Then the floodgates opened, with Curtis calling out legitimate debts from people like Rotimi and Jackie Long.
After a while, 50 started trolling, claiming debts from everyone he came in contact with, including Biz Markie, Bow Wow and others. Tony Yayo wasn’t even safe.
Drake Wears Dell Curry Jersey to Golden State Warriors vs. Toronto Raptors Game
Drizzy put some real thought into his sideline antics during a critical 2018 NBA playoff game when he pulled off an epic troll of Warriors’ star player Steph Curry. Aubrey showed up to Game 1 of the NBA Finals sporting a custom jersey of Steph’s father, Dell Curry, who played for Drake’s favorite team, the Toronto Raptors. Drake went to great lengths to get the jersey, which was autographed by Dell Curry himself.
Azealia Banks Goes to Extreme Lengths for Single Promotion
Azealia Banks is known to be a spitfire and she took things to extreme measures after feeling like her songs weren’t getting enough push in the media in 2019.
“These music media cunts are pretending not to have heard ‘Billionaire Bully’ and ‘Taste State’ so here is some controversy to start it up: I want to suck duck sauce of Andrew Yang’s uncircumcised dick,” she posed on Instgram.
Yeah, she really went there.
O.T. Genasis Set Trips on Keyshia Cole Classic
O.T. Genasis’ offkey cover of Keyshia Cole’s “Love” had the Internet in stitches in December 2019. The Cali rapper flipped the sultry love song into a Cripped-out version that circulated the world wide web faster than celebrity nudes. Everyone got a good laugh except Keyshia Cole, who reacted to a Twitter user commenting that Cole’s track would never be heard the same by replying, “Exactly. Not cool.”
Cole reportedly took action and the video started being removed from YouTube. However, it found a new home on PornHub. The “Push It” rapper continued to troll the R&B singer by teasing that they had a new collab on the way.
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