A war of words among rapper Drake, Kanye West collaborator Rhymefest, West-backed rapper Pusha T and West’s wife Kim Kardashian has led to back-and-forth diss tracks and a charity having to change its name.
“Due to recent events that have occurred over the last 48 hours, we have decided to no longer use the name Donda’s House Inc.,” the Chicago-based nonprofit youth-mentoring organization, named for West’s late mother, said in a statement released late Saturday. It did not announce a new name, saying, “We will reach out to all partners in the coming weeks regarding next steps.” Che “Rhymefest” Smith, in his early 40s, who shared a Grammy Award with West for co-writing West’s song “Jesus Walks,” is a co-founder.
The statement came in response to a series of incidents rooted in Drake’s 2016 song “Two Birds, One Stone,” which appeared to belittle Pusha T’s reputation as a former drug dealer, without naming him directly. On Thursday night, Pusha T, 41, released “Infrared” from the West-produced album “Daytona,” in which he accuses Drake of having used a ghostwriter named Quentin Miller. Drake, 31, responded within hours with “Duppy Freestyle,” which taunts West.
Rhymefest then entered the fray with a tweet beseeching Drake to “help the part of Chicago Kanye has Abandoned!” Reality-TV star Kardashian, 37, defended her husband by goading Rhymefest in a tweet alleging he wore counterfeit West apparel: “U haven’t been right since u got kicked out of the studio in Hawaii wearing fake Yeezy’s @RHYMEFEST. You’re over levergenging [sic] Kanye’s name & asked Kanye to donate money to u so stop w your fake community politics & lies. Truth is you haven’t been able to sustain the foundation.”
That prompted a statement from Rhymefest in which he asked how Kardashian could “criticize an organization that you’ve never physically been to” and encouraged her to learn about it “before you, in your position of privilege from God knows where in the world, via social media attempt to dismantle this valued community asset.”
Kardashian on Sunday afternoon retorted in multiple tweets that West had paid Rhymefest’s salary to run Donda’s House. “After several years of lack of performance from the organization and Kanye going through personal financial issues, he could no longer fund salaries. Rhymefest asked to take it over and Kanye agreed with no financial strings attached. Kanye gave his ‘friend’ an opportunity to run an organization on his own. So now that Kanye is being publicly shamed for not being involved makes no sense and, at this exact time, just seems very calculated.”
Neither Drake, Pusha T nor West have responded on social media to the Kardashian-Rhymefest exchange.