Even though The Lox and Sean “Diddy” Combs seemingly made peace after performing at the Jay-Z and Nas performance truce last month, the former Bad Boy rappers’ long-running complaints against the mogul have re-surfaced.
On Angie Martinez’s Hot 97 radio show, The Lox members Jadakiss and Styles P made a passionate, aggressive plea for their publishing and autonomy from Combs, who they claim owns half of their collective publishing.
“Imagine working for years working for years, hard work and somebody that has nothing to do with that is getting the bulk of it. You’d be totally, utterly frustrated. And, you tryin’ to get around it for years and you call about it with lawyers, but people are too powerful,” said Style P, alluding to Combs’ influence.
The Lox released their debut, Money, Power, Respect, in 1998, but departed Combs’ Bad Boy Records after orchestrating the legendary “Free The Lox” campaign. Styles, Jadakis and Sheek Louch, who was absent at the New York radio station, then joined the Ruff Ryders under the Interscope banner. The group recently vowed that they would no longer record for their label, Interscope Records, due to issues with company brass and Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson’s apparent power with the company.
“This ain’t no varmint talk – this is real life,” said Jadakiss. Eventually, Sean “Diddy” Combs called from his Manhattan office to confront The Lox and counter their claims.
“If somebody is getting in the way of you expressing yourself, you can come get at me directly,” said Diddy from the phone. “We’re businessmen. We’re all mature adults here. Y’all sit on this interview and talk as long as you want to talk or you can take the invitation I extended before. Its not even getting there -You getting on the radio, whatever tactic – I’m not your enemy. Don’t sit here and portray that Puff took something from y’all.”
Immediately, Jadakiss retorted, “Well, what is it then? What do you call it? We can’t handle it any other way dealing with lawyers and you know that. So don’t get on the radio and act like a tough guy.”
The conversation degenerated to the point where none of the parties statements were nearly incomprehensible.
“I’m a grown a** man,” said Diddy.
“You a coward,” Jadakiss responded.
“You a thief,” followed Styles.
A seemingly frustrated Diddy eventually hung up the phone as The Lox continued to vent their grievances to Martinez and the listening “We want our publishing, dog, and we got a right to that. Its been years now,” Styles P shrieked. “We been through seven lawyers and all kinds of things.”
Eventually, Mase and Lil’ Cease also joined into the fray and Biggie’s publishing became topical as well as Shyne’s jail term. After the screaming and bickering died down, Jadakiss and Styles said they would be willing to speak to Combs if they could initially avoid middlemen and council.
“At the least we want to sit down and see what we can work out without running each other in circles and telling you to call somebody and they you telling them you don’t know nothing about it,” Kiss said.