First things first: I can't stand 50 Cent. I thought his first single, '98s "How To Rob," was great and everything he's done since has been somewhere between lukewarm diarrhea and a steaming pile of shit. I just never got into the whole "I got shot 9 times, that makes me a great rapper" crap. A person's ability to rap doesn't have anything to do with their ability to retain lead. And rhyming "wanksta" with "gangsta" is the most retarded shit E-V-E-R.
On the other hand, I really love Young Buck, mostly because he's local, unrepentantly thuggish and he'll start shit with just about anyone—Lil Wayne, Dj Khaled, your mom—anyone. Plus he'll do stuff like this:
That's right, the dude stabbed a motherfucker for throwin' a punch at Dr. Dre. That's gangsta. Vitamin Water? Not so gangsta—in fact, I'd say that rebranding Kool-Aid for the Volvo-and-Dockers set is the least gangsta thing a person could ever do. Totally not cool.
But where's the beef, you ask?
Well, Buck got pissed that he wasn't being paid royalties that were allegedly due and wasn't being included in the latest G-Unit tracks, so he said something about it in public. Then 50 got pissed and kicked him out of the group. 50 then pulled a play from the Richard Nixon "Handbook of Extremely Shady Shit," taped a conversation between himself and Buck and then posted it on the ol' intertubes. (See above.)
Young Buck - Laugh Now Cry Later
Sure, Buck started crying during the conversation—which is a pretty unthug thing to do—but the fact that 50 would even tape that shit to begin with is down right deplorable. C'mon, Fiddy, you're taking this whole "G"-man thing a little too seriously—you're a shitty rapper, not J. Edgar Hoover (though I wouldn't surprised if you turned out to be a part-time transvestite).
Young Buck - Soundscan
Also, based on my opinion of him and the way he talks about the whole dispute, I wouldn't be surprised if 50 was pulling some shady cross-collateralization on YBs artist and writer royalties. 50 still has Buck in a recording contract as a solo artist, so he's obviously not letting some personal beef get in the way of making bank. And since G-Unit's bloated new album Terminate on Sight shit the bed at Soundscan, 50 will probably need a successful low-cost album and some creative accounting to keep his label in the black this year. Maybe Buck wasn't as financially prudent as he could have been (who is these days?) but that's no reason embarass the dude on the world wide web—especially if you're going to keep making money off of his efforts.
Young Buck - Terminate On Sight
The thing is though, that Young Buck is taking this all in stride and he's making some really great music. The Cashville Takeover mixtape is wall to wall bangers with great guest sappearances from The Outlawz (a crew founded by Tupac in '95), All-$tar (possibly the most clever Nashville lyricist since Roger Miller) and my favorite new-ish pill-poppin' Nashville rapper, Sosa the Plug. Everything I've heard off the All-$tar/Young Buck mixtape collabStarbucks: B.O.A.T Story is scorching hot and hints that a proper album team-up between the two locals could make a splash on the national scene.
(Though, between you and me, I don't think Starbucks the coffee company is a great example of financial solvency, but who knew they would close 600 stores within weeks of the mixtapes release? Plus, reading the business section isn't very street if you know what I mean.)
Young Buck feat. Sosa The Plug, All-$tar & 615 - Lookin For Some Hoes
This might not be the most, er, enlightened music but damn does it bump. It's some hardcore street hustler shit—violent, mysoginistic, awesome. And even though the sustainablity of gangsta records as a commercial force is in question right now, it's tough to deny the artistry our local cats bring to the game. They are maintaining the dignity of the genre by not stooping to 50 Cent's level and marketing their music to thirteen-year-old suburban mallrats. 50 has been a principal character in the steady errosion of craft and integrity in hip hop in the new millenium, and I wish him nothing but the worst of luck. So in short: Buck Fiddy and all his buckin' friends.