This article was updated on December 11, 2021
Believe it or not, the Kanye West and Drake beef saga may finally be coming to a close, as Ye invites his rival on stage to celebrate the two biggest albums of the year and the Free Larry Hoover movement.
Battle rap is deeply ingrained within hip-hop, so artist feuds are a given but when beef transcends music and takes on a life of its own, things can get dangerous.
Tensions, subliminal messages, and full-on sends have been firing back-and-forth between the pair since 2009. Throughout the 2010s, the jabs they shared were mild and, to casual audiences, largely overlooked.
In 2016, it looked like fans would finally get the Kanye/Drake collaborative album they'd been craving but the anticipation was short-lived and misplaced.
Yeezy and Drizzy's relationship took a turn for the worse in 2018 when Ye's labelmate, Pusha T, stuck his nose in the off-and-on feud, culminating in an infamous spat that revealed the existence of Drake's son, including some nasty references to Drake's producer, 40.
Never one to shy away from controversy, Ye's opened up about Drake in an early November appearance on REVOLT's Drink Champs. He acknowledged respect and admiration for Drizzy while simultaneously asserting that he sees no situation in which he'd lose a musical battle to Drake.
Less than a week after the interview, Kanye uploaded a since-deleted video to Instagram in which he appeared with J Prince (Drake's long-time mentor and associate) and invited Champagne Papi onstage for a collaborative show — apparently, Drake accepted and the trio took a photo together later that month.
The ensuing Free Larry Hoover concert at the LA Coliseum on December 9 will see the pair unite together to both celebrate two of the year's biggest albums and squash their beef in support of the Free Larry Hoover movement.
Hoover, the former leader of the Gangster Disciples, was sentenced to six life sentences in 1995.
Supporters like Kanye believe that Hoover's incarceration was racially motivated; it's been a real focal point of Kanye's political beliefs and music over the past two years, as one can observe from tracks like “Jesus Lord” and “Jesus Lord, Pt. 2” on DONDA.
In 2018, West pleaded with then-President Donald Trump to provide Larry Hoover with clemency.
Ye's second appearance on Drink Champs included Larry Hoover Jr., the elder Hoover's only son. The pair explained that Hoover Sr. wanted to see Drake and Kanye find resolution on the basis that they're two of the biggest influences in Black culture. They ought to set an example to young Black men, Hoover believes.
If nothing else, it'll certainly be an event. The still-in-progress stage design appears to be massive, going off of the footage captured by LA-based aerial camera operator John Schreiber.
"With Ye, Drake, and J Prince united to advocate for my father's release, we can take our plea for redemption worldwide and show that we are truly stronger together on behalf of any and everyone with a loved one wrongly or unjustly incarcerated," Larry Hoover Jr. said in a statement.
The actual event was a concert for the ages, where Ye came to deliver and Drake, uh, came along for the ride.