Vic Mensa Blasts DJ Akademiks For Clowning Murders In Chicago (Video)
Over the last several weeks, a new audience has gotten to know DJ Akademiks as one third of the Complex show “Everyday Struggle.” Along with Joe Budden and host Nadeska, Akademiks has covered daily topics related to Hip-Hop culture, often via intense verbal sparring matches with Budden.
Prior to his role on “Everyday Struggle,” Akademiks had already amassed substantial audiences on several platforms, including Twitter, Instagram and YouTube. In fact, Akademiks has multiple YouTube channels including his eponymous one which has well over 1 million subscribers. His most controversial channel, however, is titled “The War In Chiraq,” and it features Akademiks offering what he deems satirical commentary on music and events in the embattled streets of Chicago, particularly related to Drill music. A number of these videos actually find Akademiks making light of murders shortly after they’ve taken place, as he did with Tray 57.
Today, Vic Mensa appeared on “Everyday Struggle,” and, as a Chicago native who has lived through the violence that has plagued the city, he had some very sharp words for Akademiks. After more than 10 minutes of chatter about various topics, Akademiks says to Vic “What do you think of the state of Chicago Rap these days?” (11:40). At first, Vic gives an overview of the various musical movements that have come out of Chicago recently, including his, Chance The Rapper’s and those by Drill music artists, such as Chief Keef, Lil Reese and others.
After Vic mentions Drill, Akademiks takes the opportunity to say “Do feel Drill is done, because you also mentioned that you were repulsed that so many people outside the culture of Chicago, they hyped up the music not knowing that real lives were being affected; deaths and other types of madness happening, and the music was real a real-life depiction of that. How did you feel about that?” At that point, Vic looks directly at Akademiks and says “I wanted to slap you in your face, honestly.” He continues, “I really felt as if people exactly like you sensationalized and made a following off of clowning situations that we go through in real life. And, I think ni**as ain’t had no right. You, specifically, you ain’t ever have a right. Like what made you feel like you had a space to have a perspective on our people dying on a daily basis?”
Akademiks takes the question on its face and seeks to explain his position. “When I saw Drill, Drill was so hyped up by everyone, I had to give a different perspective of what that was for people to realize that’s not cool.” He also argues that his content was not just negative, to which Vic forcefully responds, “Nah. It was clowning! It was just negative, man! There was nothing constructive about it. And, I’ma tell you the truth. I really think you a b*tch because there’s a video that you put up about a person named Tray 57, making all these jokes like ‘Here’s another Chiraq savage. This guy is stupid. He messed with the grim reaper.’ Like, ni**a, this is not a video game. That’s a ni**a I group up with. I’ve known since I was 5 years old. And, to see you come on the Internet, with this corny ass little voice, and make jokes about it…I was waitin’ to see you. And it’s a couple people waitin’ to see you.” From there, Vic warns Akademiks about showing his face in Chicago.
Akademiks continues to defend his content as “satire,” and contends that it always came with “advice” against the violence. This further ignites Mensa, who retorts “Offering advice?? Who made you eligible to even weigh in? You sitting at a computer…You talking about real sh*t. What you know about that, bro? You really built a following off of clowning our deaths. People that I really know. And, you know what’s f*cked up about it and why I said the things I’ve said to you is because, were we to be in a room, there’s no cameras, there’s no security [and] you see us…you wouldn’t make no jokes. You wouldn’t make a single joke.”
Vic goes on to associate Akademiks with the phenomenon of the web yielding “Internet Gangsters” who talk tough from behind their screens but who are far from those personas, in real life. “Those are ballsy things to say, not coming from a ballsy person. Those are brave things to say and I don’t take you for a brave man. I really think that that’s cowardice. I think that entire perspective–that I’ma make a life off of joking about these young Black men killing each other–that’s coward sh*t, man.”
Near the end of the heated exchange, Vic calls Akademiks parasitic and likens him to those who capitalize on Hip-Hop culture from the outside. “You’re like basically one of those little kids that makes fan fiction on the Internet and creates these worlds about people they don’t even know. It’s just kind of sick when it’s real people dying young. I’m at those funerals. I just left one of those funerals on Friday.”
From there, they move on to discuss several other subjects, including JAY-Z’s upcoming new album, which Mensa (a Roc Nation artist) says he is looking forward to as a Jay fan. The exchange never becomes as heated, but Vic notes on a few occasions to Akademiks that they will cross paths outside of the studio.