BADRAPPBEEF: Lil B vs. Joe Buddens Explained
Lil B – “T-Shirt And Buddens (Joe Buddens Diss)“
from Limelinx (Internet, 2010)
This just in from the news nobody actually cares about but will talk about anyway because we’re bored on the internet department: Lil B and Joe Buddens have been embroiled in a twitter beef. I haven’t done a RAPP BEEF WRAPP UPP in a little while because that shit is just not interesting anymore but since people seemed worked up that I didn’t address the punch heard around the world (is this site usually your first stop for youtube/worldstar fuckery play-by-plays?) and because it has spilled over into the realm of rap music I guess I’ll have at it.
In a lot of ways Buddens, who is wholly insufferable as both a rapper and an internet persona, is like the evil version of B. Both are immersed in the internet at an almost creepy level and use it for the purpose of passion, productivity and attention grabbing antics. Except where B generally uses these techniques in the interest of positivity, Joe’s toxically negative in his approach. Joe’s easily the better rapper on a technical level but he’s got an extra ten years or so under his belt to account for that. And his music lacks the ideas, charisma and creativity that truly make the Based God worth paying attention to.
In chasing down the timelines it’s hard to tell exactly how the altercation started, but here’s my rough outline. B had been doing his usual twitter mindspill and talking up his new idea of a #grey race.
It’s a cheesy and childishly optimistic idea  but cheesy and childish are pretty much the core tenets of Lil B, if you haven’t noticed. From what I can tell Buddens picked up on B’s #grey ideology out of left field and began clowning him for it. Because Joe Buddens loves racism or whatever.
And B, being cheesy and childlike, responded like a fan at first, but also introduced the idea of a sparring match. Joe, being that toxically negative dude, continued to be toxically negative. This unleashed a rambling back and forth  that isn’t really worth screencapping. You already know how it plays out if you know anything about the artists. B rambled in all caps while ricocheting between overbearing positivity, gibberish and playful chiding. Joe took the overbearing sarcastic dickhead defensive stance   lunchtable cool kid style. And there you go, we have the first rap beef started over an internet discussion pertaining to a fictional and amorphous race.
Always quick to the trigger, B sent the first actual recorded shot with “T-Shirts and Buddens,”  talking a gang of shit but also being pretty clear that it was all in good fun. (If you didn’t forget, fun was once the whole point of this little thing called hip hop.)
And the track is just that, fun. B gets in some good jabs at Joe about his oldness and baldness, knocks out some strong bars particularly in the first verse. Keyboard Kid’s beat is appropriately triumphant. The internet reception has been mostly positive. But let’s be real: it’s also a really sloppy record, often structurally so unsound that its difficult to listen to. There are several instances where B squeezes too many words into a bar or spends a lot of time rhyming the same word with itself and not doing so in a very creative manner. Many of his punchlines barely make sense. These types of slips are anything but uncommon to B’s work but they’re amplified by context here. I’m all for deconstructionist Based Freestyles and all adlib voice as instrument shit in the right setting but rap warfare is not that scenario. You don’t step into the cypher with dirty Vans. Had B had spent an extra hour or two polishing his flow and choosing his words more carefully it really could have been a destructively etherous affair. Instead it’s just going to evoke a string of “hey this is better than I expected”s. Which isn’t quite enough.
This mess also raises the larger question of what B’s intent is from here on out. He’s been generating a massive buzz on the rap internet  as of late, certainly much bigger than I could have ever anticipated when I first heard him rap about the East Bay Vivarium over ambient synth wooshes some eighteen months ago. But what does he intend to do with it? As great as these blatant Worldstar/Twitter controversies are for general awareness (and his attention craved ego) they are far from the most interesting traits that he has to offer. The Budden beef would have been a great clearly delineated moment for him to show the world that he can actually rap sometimes and I think he kind of blew it. Hopefully the forthcoming Black Ken is the tape where he gets his shit together and focuses on rapping well or at least making a cohesive product. Lest he become the next Joe Buddens, an artist whose catalog is less memorable than his internet persona.
As for the beef itself, Joe has yet to record a repsonse but has, perhaps sarcastically, said that he intends to. I’m not sure if his mind is complex enough. B’s self deprecating approach has rendered him sort of bulletproof. What’s Joey gonna do, call him a faggot? We might not even find out – shortly after declaring “T-Shirts & Buddens” “BEST DISS RECORD SINCE NAS ‘ETHER'”  B took to apologizing profusely on twitter.
This is what people in the real world call the high road  and what people on the internet call the faggot bitch fail road. B’s on the internet profusely and in the real world sparingly so that means he’s once again that faggot bitch in the eyes of some anonymous haters. But it seems like he’s has a thick enough skin to handle that.
In other news B just announced his first NYC show, which I believe is also his first solo show as a headliner. Will Buddens roll through?
 And suspiciously similar to the Human Being mascot from TV’s Community.
 Understandable, because Joe Buddens has never ever ever said dumb shit on the internet.
 Very one sided on the Based division, obviously. I’m pretty sure that guy has a Twitter app running on the inside of his brain.
 JERSEY! (I say this with both pride and shame.)
 Always a classy guy, Joe also responded to a random Lil B fan by calling her a fat bitch. Again, JERSEY! (FWIW she didn’t look noticeably fat n her profile picture but maybe Joe has higher standards than I do.)
 At last a rap song! Rappers rapping > rappers doing other things.
 Even the ever hungry Bol came close to complementing it and I can’t remember the last time that dude came out in favor of a rap song that wasn’t penned by an overweight and white conspiracy theorist. Though his opinion is no doubt tainted by his long standing lovers quarrel with Buddens and his gang of groupies.
 And not “internet buzz” in the sense that a couple blogs have decided to post his music but a tangible attention level where people are actually talking about his work both positively and negatively. Most of the rap message boards I steal ideas from currently have sprawling B threads running on their front page, as do a surprising number of non-rap message boards.
 I would be remiss if I didn’t take this chance to once again mention that “Ether” isn’t actually all that great of a diss record. Actually it suffers from some of the same problems as “T-Shirt & Buddens.”
 The deeply saddening sentence “he was making fun of me over twitter when I was saying really positive stuff” probably sums up this whole debacle better than the 1200 words and two hours I just wasted trying to.