When it comes to bars in hip-hop, perspective is everything. Cardi B decided to give context to her guest appearance on Lil Yachty's "Who Want The Smoke?" after Hot 97's Funkmaster Flex seemed to take offense to her "King of New York" line.
"Who Want The Smoke?" was released Thursday (July 5) and also features Offset with adlibs from BlockBoy JB. Produced by Tay Keith, Cardi's verse acknowledges her rise to the top while paying homage to Jay-Z and the late Notorious B.I.G. with the line, "The fur on my shoulder mink, tell me what Hov would think/ I get the money, I am the king of New York."
Flex, who's become a popular commenter on rap culture, revisited his argument about rappers and songwriters soon after the song's release. The DJ has shared his disdain towards Cardi and fellow NY native 6ix9ine for proclaiming themselves the "King of New York" title.
Hip-hop enthusiasts give credit to Biggie as he coined the title throughout his music but have also extended it to Nas and Jay-Z. The line has been said by other artists like Kendrick Lamar ("Control" verse) and J.Cole (subtly on "New York Times" and "January 28th") with less backlash.
On Friday (July 6), Cardi responded to the whispers on Instagram.
"Why y'all so mad about that? Did I say I was the best rapper from NY? No. Does this s***t have to do with rapping? No," she said.
She went on to explain how the love and genuine support from her hometown make her feel like royalty. As many know, the Bronx native found fame on social media when she was an exotic dancer. Her charm and funny takes on life, pop culture and sex helped expand her brand and fueled her rap persona.
"I know street n****s and street b***hes that feel like they're the King and Queens of New York," she added. "Why can't I feel like I'm the King of New York? Every time I go to my city, people cheer me on and show so much support and it has nothing to do with this rapping. I've been packing out clubs even when I was a stripper. I go to my hood and I'm comfortable, a b***h is rich an famous and I'll still go to the projects and show love. There are n****s that can't even go back to their hood. I love my city. Let me a king. Why can't I be a motherf**king king?
It isn't known if Flex caught wind of Cardi's repsonse but he did share more thoughts on Twitter.
If you haven't heard the track yet, check it out below.