On a scale of 1-10, how upset are you that Drake allegedly doesn't write his own rhymes?
If you haven't been tuned into the latest slice of beef in the rap stratosphere, then here's an update. A Twitter spat between Meek Mill and Drake resulted in Meek shouting from the Internet mountains the ultimate hip hop bomb drop: Drake doesn't write his own rhymes. Further, he called out the elusive ghostwriter by name: Quentin Miller. Okay, so now that we have this information, what do we plan to do with it?
First off, let's all be honest with ourselves. If you're a Drake hater, this has made your day. This is yet another feather in your anti-Drake fitted, where you can strut around and shout "AND HE DOESN'T EVEN WRITE HIS OWN RHYMES!" You have found your ultimate punchline in the rap battle of your mind that you've been crafting ever since you watched 8 Mile. This is actually an extension of Drake "freestyling" off his Blackberry in front of Funkmaster Flex, and you are very pleased as you "never liked that dude." You are loving this moment. It's erased any beard-slash-body envy you've had about the Drizz over the last few weeks. And you don't even rap.
If you're a Drake lover, well, you might be conflicted.
You might be the girl who metaphorically licks her braces every time you hear the mere mention of Drake's name. His rhymes have dried your tear-soaked pillows at night. He's been that gentle "Hey you. It's gonna be OK" reminder like he's your own little pocket therapist. He's not Drake to you most days; he's OVO Dr. Phil, and now that his rhymes aren't his own, WHO WAS THE REAL PERSON KEEPING YOU WARM AT NIGHT? Was it Quentin Miller? Is he even cute enough to fill that role? So many questions.
Rappity rap guys...don't really know what to tell ya. You're like, "Yo god (you've taken it back to 1994 lingo apparently because you're also Team Ghostface in his beef with Action Bronson), I used to ride for this dude. Not anymore, god. Not anymore."
And then there's the middle ground — the casual Drake fans who enjoy his catchphrases and hit singles. You've never been to the 6 and you don't have any woes, but you like the expression just the same. You don't know how to feel at this point because his hit singles have very little lyrically intrinsic value to begin with. However, if you are a casual Drake fan with a finely tuned rap ear, then you have noticed some of his singles and B-sides have definitely evolved in the bars category. Maybe they aren't loose pages of a Merriam-Webster Dictionary, but they do the damn thing.
Why does any of this matter, though, when we're dealing with an artist who is known more for his sing-songy rhymes and slightly sad cadence and not the content behind the voice?
Here's the bottom line: present day hip hop is riddled with notions from guys like Diddy — who rapped, "Don't worry if I write rhymes, I write checks" — and guys like Kanye West — who said, "Does he write his own rhymes? Well, sort of. I think 'em." — and even artists like Nas, who were previously challenged for allegedly having ghostwriters like Jay Electronica. The foundations of rap music are built upon self-penned lyricism but have fault lines filled with ghostwriters.
It's a sad reality we are all faced with from time to time, but if learning that Drake has some help with his bars has floored you, then you need to stay on the ground. Drake was never (or should never be, rather) a contender for the Greatest Rapper Alive title. It could be revealed that a 13-year-old girl writes his music, and given the "Ouchie, I'm sad" nature of some of his hits, that might actually be believable. This is also not the first time he's been accused of having a ghostwriter. Just last year it was rumored that a woman wrote his songs for him. Either way, Drake was never your lyrical knight in shining armor, so don't let this news break you. You'll get through this. You still love Drake's songs, even if he didn't write them.
...But let's just hope he didn't use a ghostwriter to come up with the meaning behind Y.O.L.O., because then there will be real problems.
(Photo: Johnny Nunez/Getty Images)