Hip-hop’s throwback days witnessed some of the most epic and lyrically fueled beefs of rap music’s high society that, to this day, will never be lived down.
And to prove it, a perhaps likely source has come forth to discuss bars now that 15 years have passed since the most infamous feud of rap’s past between two of New York hip-hop’s emblematic and legendary emcees, Jay Z and Nas.
Carmen Bryan, the mother of Nas’s now-22-year-old daughter Destiny Jones, spoke with Vlad TV about Jay Z’s diss track response to the Queens native’s “Ether” diss, “Super Ugly,” amid their 2001 rap quarrel. Her main offense taken to the track was Jay’s collateral blows at her reputation, she also revealed. In the scorching diss record, the Brookyln rap banger makes some X-rated commentary on Bryan, who admits that she and Nas had broken up during this time but were still co-parenting and kept a close relationship.
“Me and the boy A.I. got more in common than just balling and rhyming / Get it? More in Carmen,” Jay spit on the Dr. Dre-produced track. “I came in your Bentley backseat / Skeeted in your Jeep / Left condoms on your baby seat.”
Not only does Bryan claim that the initial reception of the track was ill-received by fans, but she believes the backfire from Jay after the success of Nas’s “Ether” was simply on impulse.
“That was such an emotional reaction,” she stated. “And then No. 2, Destiny was like 8 [or] 9 years old when ‘Super Ugly’ came out. So, what car seat is she sitting in at 9 [or] 10 years old. Jay Z’s never been in any of our vehicles. So, you know, that was just him grasping at things and just trying to make an instant comeback. But even the next day, when he got on the radio station, HOT 97, he was disheveled; he sounded like he was about to cry. He wasn’t sure where he was going with the story. His mother called and made him apologize.”
Explaining further that she didn’t believe it was well-planned, she added her belief that Jay ultimately regrets dropping the song. At least, that’s what she said a mutual friend of her and the Roc Nation emperor revealed later on.
“It was an emotional reaction to an a**-whooping,” she declared.
Ironically, she continued, now that Jay has entered fatherhood, Bryan advises that he be more weary of bringing children into adult matters.
“Now he has a daughter, and social media is a beast. Back then, when he made these disparaging remarks and comments about my daughter and created this disgusting visual, there were so many people around him that stayed quiet. They said absolutely nothing. Sometimes when you don’t pick a side, you kind of pick a side. I’m a totally different person. Had Nas said something like that about their child, all hell would’ve broke loose. I would not, as a woman, have stood by any man that disrespects children and drags them into adult affairs.”
Reminding that children don’t have a voice in such matters and have to be protected, she believes that it was a “sucker move” on Jay’s behalf. Another topic of discussion was revered basketball star Allen Iverson, who was named in the song as “A.I.” and who Bryan had also dated at one point.
“Poor Allen. As if he didn’t have enough going on in his own life and situations,” she said. “It had absolutely nothing to do with the beef between Jay Z and Nas; I don’t even know why [Jay Z] pulled that in there.”
According to her, Allen didn’t take very kindly to the name-drop either and allegedly approached Jay in Philly after the song about it.
“It was like, ‘N***a! Don’t be pulling my name in your bulls**t. Why would you drop my name? Keep my name outta that.'”
(Photo from left: Evan Agostini/Getty Images, Nick Elgar/ImageDirect)