GHOST WRITERS PANICKING – Drake Responds To Kendrick Lamar Diss On IG Live | HO

Kendrick Lamar Disses Drake and J. Cole on Future and Metro Boomin’s New Song ‘Like That’

Kendrick Lamar made an uncredited appearance on Future and Metro Boomin’s new album “We Don’t Trust You,” and with it delivered a series of apparently sharp, pointed words for Drake and J. Cole.

Lamar, whose fiery verse lights up “Like That,” steals the spotlight on the track, where he addresses a few bars from Drake and J. Cole’s “First Person Shooter” included on the former’s “For All the Dogs.” On that song, which released last year, J. Cole makes mention of the “big three,” referring to Lamar, Drake and himself: “Love when they argue the hardest emcee / Is it K. Dot? Is it Aubrey? Or me? / We the big three like we started a league.”

Drake retorted with a bar that could be interpreted as a shot at Lamar, excluding him from the “big three” designation: “Who the G.O.A.T.? Who you bitches really rootin’ for? Like a kid that act bad from January to November, n—a, it’s just you and Cole.”

Kendrick Lamar Disses Drake and J. Cole on New Song 'Like That'

On “Like That,” Lamar directly references the rappers’ bars and comes gunning for them. “Yeah get up with me, fuck sneak dissing / ‘First Person Shooter,’ I hope they came with three switches,” he raps, later adding, “Motherfuck the big three, n—a, it’s just big me.”

Later in the verse, he comes for the quality of their music and says that his legacy will outlast their influence, comparing himself to Prince and his relationship to Michael Jackson. “Your best work is a light pack / N—a, Prince outlived Mike Jack / N—a, bum, ‘fore all your dogs get buried / That’s a K with all these nines, he gon’ see Pet Sematary.”

This isn’t the first time that Lamar has stirred up controversy by directly referencing his peers. In 2013, he delivered a scene-stealing verse on Big Sean’s “Control,” also featuring Jay Electronica, running down a list of rappers and stating that while he has love for all of them, he sees them as competitors and intends to bring them down.

While Lamar’s verse on “Like That” was certainly the most newsworthy moment from the album, Future and Metro Boomin’s long-awaited collaborative project “We Don’t Trust You” arrived on Friday, marking the first of two releases from the pair. The second, which is currently untitled, will be released on April 12.

VIDEO: Drake Responds To Kendrick Lamar Diss On IG Live

Should Drake and J. Cole Respond to Kendrick Lamar? Here Are Pros and Cons For Each

The ball is in Drake and J. Cole’s court.

After Kendrick Lamar sent shots at his peers on “Like That” (read a whole breakdown of the situation here if you’ve been living under a rock), the rap world’s attention now turns to Drake and Cole. Will they respond? If so, how will they do it?

Drake and Kendrick have a long history of tension that dates back to 2013, following Dot’s infamous “Control” verse, and now their quiet beef has finally boiled over into direct jabs. Cole and Kendrick have always seemed to be on good terms—Cole spoke highly of Kendrick as recently as last November on Lil Yachty’s A Safe Space podcast—but he may have been hit with these shots because of his close association with Drake.

Now Drake and Cole have some decisions to make. Will they respond to Drake? If so, how should they do it? Under the assumption that they would each respond in music, rather than on social media, we broke down the pros and cons of Drake and J. Cole firing back at Kendrick. As K. Dot himself once said, “I’m usually homeboys with the same niggas I’m rhyming with/ But this is hip-hop and them niggas should know what time it is!”

Will Drake Respond?

Prince Williams / WireImage


If Drake responds to Kendrick with a well-crafted verse, it would be a reminder to the naysayers that he can do more than just send subliminal shots, because he also has a history of making surgical diss tracks. During his feud with Meek Mill in 2015, he disarmed the Philly rapper with “Charged Up,” which had wild bars like “Come live all your dreams out at OVO/ We gon’ make sure you get your bread and you know the ropes,” before ether-ing him with “Back to Back,” the first ever Grammy-nominated diss track. And he might have lost his beef with Pusha-T, but “Duppy Freestyle” is still a very lyrically impressive record. (”I had a microphone of yours, but then the signature faded/ I think that pretty much resembles what’s been happenin’” is a cold-ass bar.) If it comes down to it, a new diss record from Drake that isn’t marred by any unnecessary drama could be great for rap and for his own career.


If Drake doesn’t bring his A-game, it could backfire and make him look even worse. He has a tendency to play characters in different situations he’s in, and as of late, he’s either been the OVO mob boss who raps about “linking with the opps” for J Prince or the “petty king” who plans to “buy your most personal belongings when they’re up for auction.” The worst thing that Drake could do in this situation is play too deeply into one of these personas and deliver a diss record that’s all about how he’s more rich than Kendrick. Even if it’s true, no one wants to hear that. As the most commercially successful rapper of the last decade, with countless accolades to his name, Drake has a lot to lose in this situation. If he releases a wack response and ultimately loses a battle with Kendrick, it would put a major blemish on his reputation and could knock him off of what many believe is a throne he’s been sitting on for years.

My take:

Drake is tired of people playing with his name. He responded to For All The Dogs criticism by releasing a Scary Hours Edition deluxe pack, which was filled with the exact kind of lyricism that many critics said was missing from the original album. He reads every comment and sees what people are saying on the internet, and I don’t think he’s going to let Kendrick get away with bodying him on a song from his old homies Metro Boomin and Future.

In November, he said that he wrote the five additional Scary Hours songs while he was on the road, explaining that this is the most inspired he’s felt since If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late. If that’s the case, then he shouldn’t have a problem crafting one refined record aimed squarely at Kendrick (and potentially Future and Metro) while he’s on tour. There are plenty of reasons why he would choose not to respond, mainly because Kendrick has the capability to bar him up, but given how explosive “Like That” is, I doubt Drake will stay out of the booth. Now is the time for him to finally respond directly, because Kendrick came at him in a way that was too straightforward for Drake to ignore. If he doesn’t, it might always go down as a “what-if” moment for him and he could be haunted by criticism about backing down to a formidable opponent. He definitely shouldn’t do what he usually does and make a shady Instagram post, followed by sprinkling subliminal disses in every solo rap single, guest verse, and concert speech for the next 6 years.

Will J. Cole Respond?

Paras Griffin / Getty Images


It’s never been unanimously agreed upon who is better between J. Cole and Kendrick Lamar, but if Cole successfully won a direct war of words, he would finally have more ammo in the debate. Cole had a hell of a year in 2023 as he dominated every feature he appeared on, firmly establishing himself as one of the best MCs alive right now. He’s had friendly sparring matches with Kendrick before, like when they rapped over each other’s beats on their 2015 “Black Friday” singles, and it seems like there is a mutual respect between the two of them. If Cole chose to respond to Lamar’s jabs, and did so triumphantly, he would position himself in a class of his own right now. He already had the best verse on Drake’s “First Person Shooter.” Now all that remains is for him to prove that he can out-rap Kendrick on the most visible stage possible.


For fans of Cole and Kendrick, the worst-case scenario would be if they ruined their relationship because of a back-and-forth feud. Some are still holding out for a long-awaited collab album between the two of them, and it would be unfortunate if a verse that was primarily aimed at Drake created a rift that went beyond music. For Cole, a loss to Kendrick on a stage like this would strengthen arguments that he is definitively in third place amongst the Big 3. It would be a major blow to his legacy if he went head-to-head and couldn’t meet Kendrick’s lyrical ability.

My take:

Most of Kendrick’s shots were directed at Drake on “Like That,” and while Cole did catch some bars, I don’t think he will (or should) respond to Kendrick’s verse with bars. Kendrick is more likely to get a phone call from Cole than a verse, which is what he did with Noname after she responded to his “Snow On Tha Bluff.” Plus, Cole and Kendrick don’t have the same contentious history that Dot and Drake do. It wouldn’t be perceived as an L from fans if he chose to stay quiet and let Drake defend himself, so I don’t think we’ll be hearing any direct shots at Kendrick, which is probably the right call. There’s a lot more risk than reward for Cole when it comes to responding to Kendrick.