The LOX & Dipset Want A Verzuz Rematch…Here’s Why They Shouldn’t Do It
On August 3, 2021, Verzuz’s 33rd battle proved to be one of its best. In the second season of the music battle format co-created by Swizz Beatz and Timbaland, The LOX competed against Dipset at Madison Square Garden’s Hulu Theater. With Verzuz having launched the same month that the pandemic began, this matchup was a demonstration how veteran artists could use the format to change their careers.
For many, The LOX came into the Garden as underdogs. However, in the eyes of nearly everyone—including Ambrosia For Heads‚ they left as victors. The performance was an exercise in preparation, performance, and Hip-Hop purism, with over five million reportedly tuned in. Jadakiss, Styles P, Sheek Louch, and Technician The DJ showed their prowess through commanding the stage, far-reaching song selection, and an attitude that aligned with Kiss’ famous lyric: “I’m not cocky; I’m confident / So when you tell me I’m the best it’s a compliment.“
Jadakiss Had A Career Defining Moment With LOX Verzuz Dipset
While The LOX trio thrived, Dipset fumbled. Rather than instrumentals, the Uptown vets rapped to vocal tracks. They chided their opponents for being too Hip-Hop, with comments like “This ain’t S.O.B’s,” referring to smaller New York City venues with more traditional shows. Announcing he was “in war mode,” Jadakiss matched his competition’s petty remarks. “You gonna rap or you gonna keep playing Paula Abdul?” said the Yonkers, New York veteran in what was surely a game-changing moment of his extensive career.
Since the battle, the two crews went on tour together, capitalizing on their exposure. Streaming for the artists reportedly soared following the Verzuz. Jadakiss has said he renegotiated his Def Jam Records contract to his favor. That storied label also formally released “Who Shot Ya Freestyle,” a decade-old DJ Clue joint that ‘Kiss had performed in his display—recorded to the famed 1995 Biggie Smalls instrumental (produced by Diddy and Nashiem Myrick). Sheek and Styles have each since released solo efforts, including P’s Wreckage Manner, with Mobb Deep’s Havoc.
Conway The Machine & Jim Jones Are Going To Battle Rap The Old School Way
Now, a year and a half after one of Hip-Hop’s most exciting Verzuz battles, there is talk of a rematch. Weeks ago, Jim Jones admitted to AllHipHop‘s Chuck Creekmur that the Dips were ill-prepared in 2021. He proposed running it back. “I don’t think that energy will ever be duplicated outside of New York unless we go for the rematch, you heard?” The artist continued. “Last time, there was a lot going on. The venue was way too small. There were people on my back. There were people on people’s shoulders in there.”
Jimmy continued, “I think we need proper respect of doing it in the Garden, the big Garden, with proper security, set up right so everybody have breathing room. Not using it as no excuse, but we need a rematch for the city. I’m puttin’ it out there like ‘Rocky’ after he lost to ‘Apollo Creed’…And we gonna be ready like hot spaghetti.” The artist added that he wanted a definitive scoring for the matchup. “Let’s score it like a boxing match. Let’s get the judges. Let’s make it live. Let the people vote live. Let’s do it right. Let’s really go for it.” Jadakiss said he embraces the challenge when speaking to VIBE’s Preezy Brown. “You gotta talk to my advisors,” the artist said with a laugh. “I would love to run it back, you know what I mean? Why not? For sure.”
Jim Jones Gets Teary Detailing His Sacrifices For Cam’ron & Dipset (Video)
On episode #104 of the What’s The Headline podcast (embedded above in video and audio), starting at 19:35, the AFH team argues why a rematch is not worthwhile. While a rematch may offer new attention and instant gratification for the parties involved, it also likely dilutes one of the most meaningful moments in The LOX members’ careers. A cemented win now potentially writes a new chapter—especially from Jadakiss, who previously competed against Fabolous on Verzuz in 2020. Additionally, the climate for Verzuz has changed as the pandemic has shifted. A rehash of a two-year-old battle seems like a step down for a company that provided so much entertainment in 2020 and 2021. To Jim Jones’ point, initiatives like voting—whether from fans or judges would be one improvement that must happen to make this more than a retread. With that, The Diplomats create a possibility of a win—that would devalue a 2021 highlight. Without a change, it’s merely a callback to different times.
Nearly a year ago, Verzuz last had a Hip-Hop battle, with 8Ball & MGK facing off against Bun B as UGK.
DJ Scratch Explains The Tension At The Big Daddy Kane & KRS-One Verzuz
Other discussion topics include new music by Larry June & Alchemist, DJ Drama, Tyler, The Creator, and Royce 5’9. There is also chatter about a possible authorized Suge Knight biopic, some recent on-the-media comments DJ Akademiks made toward top Hip-Hop artists, and some exciting news from Madlib.
Last month, Jadakiss was in the news for some comments he made about predatory recording contracts and how labels are gambling with artists’ lives.
Jadakiss Calls Out Record Labels For Gambling With Artists’ Lives
#BonusBeat: AFH’s What’s The Headline podcast interviews The LOX in 2020: