In a new interview with Billboard, Rap-A-Lot CEO and respected Houston businessman J. Prince revealed that the Pusha T and Drake beef may have been in danger of escalating further than previously thought. While he was technically giving the interview to promote his new book, The Art & Science Of Respect, the conversation naturally turned to the ongoing, increasingly contentious feud between his protege and the GOOD Music president.
According to Billboard‘s William E. Ketchum III, Prince showed a threatening text he’d received in the days since he interjected in the rap beef to advise Drake to hold his response to Pusha’s “Story Of Adidon.” “The Story Of Adidon” was itself a response to Drake’s “Duppy Freestyle,” which was a response to references made against him on Pusha’s Daytona closer, “Infrared.” As “Duppy” made use of Pusha’s fiancé Virginia Williams as part of a double entendre, Pusha considered this license to ridicule Drake’s relationship with his father, mock his continued use of producer “40” Shebib, who has long battled multiple sclerosis, and revealed a rumored illegitimate child Drake may have fathered with a French adult film star.
J. Prince insists that he stepped in to prevent the beef from crossing into real-life conflict, explaining just how far things have really gone to Ketchum:
You told Sway that you thought this beef could reach 2Pac and Biggie territory. What makes you think it could go that far?
Whenever disrespect is fertilized, it can always go there. When mother, father, and others are disrespected, it can always go there. I just got a text on my phone from somebody with a threat about staying away from Pusha-T. I don’t know where it came from, but I see addresses [of people I know]. “Keep his name out of your mouth, or else.” [J Prince scrolls through his phone and shows a text message from a number that isn’t saved as a contact.]
These are real-life situations we have to deal with. I understand where it can go, and I’m trying to circumvent it. But by the same token, I’m really the wrong person to be trying to go there with. I understand it, and I’m in a position to try to put an end to it. But the devil don’t even like peace. Believe it or not, he sees you going through peace, and he don’t want it. That means nothing. But this decision, we’re standing by it, and we’re going to move along to do good business.
Have you received any other threats before this?
This is the first one, but it’s definitely on my phone. Of course, people talk loosely, but a pair of lips will say anything.… Your people that surround you are going to come together. Somebody want stripes. Somebody want to get brownie points. When you don’t put these kind of fires to bed, that fire turns into a blaze or explosion, and there it is. That’s real life.