The Seven Most Memorable Rap Beatdowns

Wreckx-n-Effect went New Jack Swing on A Tribe Called Quest's Q-Tip in 1993.
Wreckx-n-Effect went New Jack Swing on A Tribe Called Quest's Q-Tip in 1993.

When pop stars and Hollywood types need to settle a score, they take it to the courtroom. Hip-hop, however, operates by a different code: If you act up, you will get smacked up. Rocks Off was reminded of this when a man recently filed suit claiming that our friend Slim Thug had pistol-whipped and robbed him.

The case is now in court, with the man is seeking damages for aggravated assault and theft. While the jury deliberates on the matter, entertain yourself with our round-up of the seven most memorable beatdowns in rap history.


Aside from "Rump Shaker," Wreckx-N-Effect is probably best known for beating the shit out of Q-Tip in '93. As far as the New Jack Swing crew was concerned, Phife Dawg had them in mind when he rapped this line on Tribe's "Jazz (We Got)": "Strictly hardcore tracks/Not a new Jack swing." They met Q-Tip outside a concert in New York and gave him a black eye in retaliation.


The 2008 Ozone Awards, held in Houston, will always be tied to the brief altercation between Mike Jones and Trae the Truth. Jones left the show with a bloodied nose, and Trae was escorted from the venue following the fracas. Thankfully, both men later issued separate statements apologizing to the public - but not to each other.

The Seven Most Memorable Rap Beatdowns

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It's one of the unwritten rules of rap: Never go to war with the Wu-Tang Clan. First, it's the damn Wu-Tang Clan. Second, there's 200 of them. You don't stand a chance. Just ask Joe Budden, who broke this rule and paid with his right eye.

Budden had been tossing barbs at members of the clan, including Method Man and Inspectah Deck. Deck did what most rappers would do and took it to the mike. After a few months of back and forth, Budden apologized and everyone assumed the beef was dead. But Raekwon had a different plan.

Budden was backstage streaming a video from the Los Angeles stop of Slaughterhouse's Rock the Bells tour when a member of Rae's crew stormed in and punched him in the face. Budden vlogged about the incident while holding a towel of ice to his face.

"For the people just joining me, I just wanna let everybody know that I'm alright," he said. "Raekwon didn't actually hit me. We was in the middle of talking...and them niggas just came in like Storm Troopers."

The Seven Most Memorable Rap Beatdowns

This beef started on wax and culminated in a street fight. Ras Kass drew first blood on his song "Caution": "Get a thousand tattoos and won't raise ya gun/ So when you get merked, I'ma raise ya son." Now this was back when Game still had that butterfly tat on his face. The more insulting line, though, was the direct reference to Game's son. That's a no-no. Upset, Game ran up on Ras Kass and confronted him.

Ras Kass confirmed the altercation in a YouTube video, eye jammy and all, claiming Game was 30 deep when the fight took place. "The n--a tried to jump me 30 to 2, yet I'm alive and chillin'," Ras Kass said in a statement. "My sweater is still white and all my jewelry intact. Game is a 'Change Of Heart,' stripping, fake-ass blood, who sold some records riding Dr Dre's shirt tails."

Ras Kass must have been seeing double that night, because Game had a different recollection of the incident. "Aint nobody hit that dude but me, he's crazy talking about 30 people," Game told "I never had beef and never met Ras Kass, unless it was a quick exchange saying 'hello.' He talked about my son by name. You can say what you want about me, but what does my son got to do with it?

"I seen the n***a in the club. I walked up to him in the club and it was my man's birthday, so I didn't want to mess up his party. When the lights came on, at the end I asked him about the freestyle. He said it wasn't nothing, but he started in on that 'it's whatever I'm Ras Kass and punched him in the face before he could finish."

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