Q-Tip & Michael Rapaport Continue Feuding About Tribe Called Quest Documentary

Q-Tip tells Hip Hop artists to tell their own stories while Michael Rapaport says Q-Tip's last message to him was to "stay white and be privileged."

The controversy surrounding Beats, Rhymes & Life, the recent Tribe Called Quest documentary, has a new chapter. Recently Q-Tip went on MTV's Rap Fix to speak with Sway Calloway about the film and made comments that appeared to be racially driven. The film's director, Michael Rapaport responded to those comments and revealed that he has received comments from Q-Tip in the past that indicate a racial issue may be at the core of this feud. 

Q-Tip began said interview with positive words about the documentary and about Rapaport before warning other emcees to "tell your own stories." 

"He really did a great job and I commend him, still. He really did an amazing job so I don't want to deter anyone from seeing it," Tip noted, before expressing his concern about having Rapaport direct a documentary about his group. "Again, this is just another warning shot, a flare coming from a cannon so that they could get this thing right...The other thing is, to everybody out there in Hip Hop who's crossed the threshold, who's done work, who has a history, whether it be Queen Latifah, Rakim, Wu-Tang, Jay-Z, Nas, Ice Cube or N.W.A., yo, tell y'all own stories. Be in charge of your own stories, you hear me? Tell your own stories. We're griots, look that up. We're griots, man. We've gotta pass our own stories on. This is a part of our tradition, as African Americans predominantly. Let's tell our own stories. We can let everybody come in and participate with us in this but don't fall for the Hollywood, 'Nobody's ever done this before.' We Hip Hop, man. It's a Hip Hop nation. We crack the mold, we break the rules. We define this culture that we in right now, this Western culture, the shit that's moving around the world, whether it be Tribe to Lil Wayne, Drake to I don't care...This Hip Hop shit is our shit."

Rapaport then went to Rap Fix with his response, saying he was confused by the interview. 

"I don't understand what he was talking about with telling their own stories," Rapaport replied. "I don't know if it was like, Hip Hop artists should direct movies about Hip Hop artists. Or maybe he was saying, 'I should direct a documentary about myself,' which has never been done before."

"Martin Scorcese does movies about gangsters, and if you've ever been around Martin Scorcese, he's the furtherst thing from a gangster...I don't know if he meant, 'We're from Hip Hop, it should be a Hip Hop director' or — I don't know who would go under the auspices of being a Hip Hop director. Or if it was a racial thing like, 'We're black and shouldn't have a white director.' It was confusing to me." 

In the end, Rapaport revealed that the last form of communication he had with Q-Tip ended with an e-mail from Tip.

"Last time I heard from Q-Tip he sent me an email and he said, 'All you gotta do is stay white and be privileged.'" 

RELATED: Movie Review-Beats, Rhymes & Life

73 Comments

  • Frank O'toole

    Rappers rap about themselves all day - cmon son. why not do a documentary on yourself.

  • Hashemite

    He is a musician really listen to the music Tribe produced. Remember by him voicing his opinion that gave a whole generation a voice. You have to have a superb understanding of the essence of music to create masterpieces. He has a right to say whatever he wants - the movie is about his life and the life of the members of the group. Just like the director has a right to edit the movie the way he wants. He put a whole new generation on to Jazz musicians that America forgot about although not single handedly. De La, Dre and PE or Hank Shockley did it by sampling P. Funk. Marley with James Brown. Primo - with 2 bar jazz samples . To be a musician or any type of artist that influences american culture or culture period you must be opinionated you must be assertive either verbally or through your work. You don't influence the way people dress — they way producers use samples by being a bump on a log waiting for somebody else to tell you that you are "Hot" you have to first be that and know it — think about it. Look at this situation from a historical perspective. Research the stories of Blue note Records - chess records - so on and so forth. Check out Jean-Michel Basquiat and Warhol relationship . Ray Charles had to fight to . Look at Jack Johnson he is the reason boxers have entourages. Even George washington Carver - he invented peanut butter - Jiffy owes his estate as least a penny for every jar sold. Billy Strayhorn wrote "take the A train" but Ellington got the credit why he wasnt assertive enough and eventually imploded. Mj - James Brown- George Clinton - Jay - Coombs - It takes a lot for an artist to get their creations to commercial market without it being altered. They have to fight over and over for it to remain authentic. Thats why hip hop and music goes through so many evolutions - At one time rappers wore make up and eyeliner — why? - When artist stop fighting the change takes place. Baggy jeans — cross colors — karl kani - fubu to super tight skinny jeans - Where is your loyalty until you meet him face to face reserve the judgement. Maybe some things were promised and things were omitted that should have remained because it offered a resolution to certain situations. After seeing the trailer you think the whole film is about tension and conflict. Thats what draws you in. Remember the investors have the final say most of the time - the director was pressured to show certain things to make it a little more interesting. Everyone understands conflict. Everyone doesn't understand Hip Hop music. Everyone knows who really capitalizes on African American Culture I think thats what frustrates him. It should . It should infuriate you to. Do some research. Regain a perspective and create something. Biting eachothers head off is a waste of your time and talent. Use the net to construct your masterplan. aight

  • poo mc pipe

    are all u people stupid, qtip just doesn't want you to see the fighting between him and phife

  • Anthony Sleep Harris

    Q-Tip is one of my faves( music wise) but I've heard more than once dude has funny ways. He should be flattered that anyone regardless of race, economic background or gender (gay rumors) is taking an interest in the group like that. For Micheal Rappaport to endure the shit he has, it should let Tip know the man is dedicated. Somehow I think he may have been holding out for maybe a Singleton or Lee to direct.

  • Malcolm Reborn

    Surprise, surprise. HipHopDX removed my post defending Q-Tip's point of view. I wonder why they did that.

  • DA GAME FUCKED UP

    Bitches can these fucking girls man up and just tell there fucking story how it was not fucking hard.

  • Potato_w_Jive

    I believe it. Having lived in NYC for a while I've heard more than a few stories of Q-Tip's infamous attitude. "Hes an asshole" "He's arrogant" and the like. I have spotted him on the street myself and tried to say what up and I got dissed. He was probably busy. No love lost. When he appeared on the Blakroc project with Black Keys I was excited to see the studio footage of them working together. So I tuned in to that episode and when it was time for him to show up, the guys from Black Keys welcomed him with "HEY, you're early! None of the other rappers we've worked with have been early. You are the first!" He looked irritated and his immediate response was, "I'm not a rapper...I'm a MUSICIAN". Made the whole mood of the place awkward. To catch an attitude in the first 20 seconds of meeting someone is enough for me to believe he is that kind of guy.

  • Skills

    Never in my wildest dreams would I ever think one day I would be siding with Michael rappaport over Qtip.

  • Nash Benjamin

    Nobody is "black" or "white." We're mixed shades of the three essential colors- blue, yellow, and red! "Black & white" were labels created by the European slave trade to help distinguish and separate the "lighter" Africans into one label, & "darker" Europeans into another. And black and white are contrasts, not colors, so it's impossible to say any one is REALLY black or white! So everyone is arguing over nonsense that America created. I mean, can my half brown-half-pink cousin be half "white & privileged?" If my Mother is Mexican-Irish, does this make me 3/4 privileged? We need to stop labeling ourselves into categories and recognize we all bleed, breath in the same air, and sleep under the same sky at night! Peace to ALL my human family, from the lightest to the darkest!!

  • think

    the comments Tip said about being griots and telling our own stories make PERFECT sense. Think about it and go beneath the surface of the words. Look at hip hop nowadays. It's damn near about to go the same route as jazz did. This is our culture and we need to protect it by any means. Do you realize how much power hip hop has? This culture is the western culture. Just think about it before you say something stupid, seriously. Look all around you, turn on the TV, go walk outside. Hip Hop is EVERYWHERE. It influences everything. Don't let it be gone just like that

  • tryintokillmyselfwhitey

    This is all about....money money money, and a dude who feels like he is being exploited by a white man. Maybe he is? I like them both either way, still think tip sounds a bit nutty

  • Anonymous

    @tipsta enjoy doin them shows for 50 people venues, jus dont do any in the UK coz ignorant mindstates like yours are liable to get you stomped

  • mgruppe.com

    WHO OWNS THIS "HIP-HOP-SHIT" ANYWAY? WHO HAS THE RIGHT TO DEFINE THE "SHIT" OR PRESENT IT TO THE WORLD? TIP IS RIGHT ABOUT ONE THING: PEOPLE SHOULD WRITE THEIR OWN HISTORY AND GIVE IT TO THE NEXT GENERATION. HE DOES APRRECIATE RAPAPORTS WORK BECAUSE IT BENEFITS HIM AND HONORS HIS WORK WITH TCQ - BUT TO STATE "STAY WHITE AND PRIVILEGED" IS A BITCHMOVE FROM A EMCEE WHO IS IRRELEVANT IN THE PRESENT WHERE KIDS LISTEN TO BULLSHIT. AT LEAST THIS "BEEF" MIGHT PROMOTE THE HELL OUT OF THIS MOVIE. MAYBE THAT WAS THE PLAN ANYWAY. P. S. FUCK THE ENTIRE HUMAN SPECIES

  • NOLAson

    I could be wrong, but I believe what the Brother Tip wants to say is this: 1)Hip Hop has been around long enough to give way to meaningful stories. 2) Whether those stories are about legacy, tradition, or just the art form itself, those storied need to be told. 3) There are people who look like him, and come from where he comes from that are just as capable of telling those stories, yet it's hard for them to get the support they need to produce said projects. His argument is akin to the music industry itself, and the joking, but honest premise that rappers, ALL of them, are accountable to the tall Israeli brothers that run the record labels, and NOT so much the culture. I don't think this is an issue specifically directed at Rapaport, but what he needs to understand, is that if he really wants to give something back to Hip Hop (and I won't feign ignorance about Michael Rapaport's dealings), why not take someone from within the culture; someone who grew up around Hip Hop, and help them tell the rest of the stories. What IS an issue for Rapaport is his playing dumb. He knows exactly what the fuck Tip is saying. If he's as big a fan, supporter, respecter of hip hop as a culture, then he knows that it has been mined by people who had nothing to do with its existence. At some point, I'd love to watch, read the life story of Big Daddy Kane, De La, etc. from the perspective of someone that grew up - not only listening to - but eating, breathing, and living that shit. But that's just me.

    • Aaron B. Baldwin

      "What IS an issue for Rapaport is his playing dumb. He knows exactly what the fuck Tip is saying. If he's as big a fan, supporter, respecter of hip hop as a culture, then he knows that it has been mined by people who had nothing to do with its existence." You NAILED it directly!.....I wonder though for all those young aspiring film makers of color who come from the same environments their favorite artist do who want to tell their stories should just pick up a camera and ASK them if they can do exactly that. I'm sure that's how it started with Michael and Tribe in the first place, now actually taking footage and being able to turn it into a film and releasing it is ANOTHER story!

  • Jamila Wallace

    Q-Tip is no racist. For him to say something like that is out of character. We don't what went on during filming to make Tip say something like that. Not that I'm saying it would justify saying something that harsh...

  • Anonymous

    Q Tip should be way more appreciative that someone cares enough to document a film on them, which is actually considered to be a 'love letter to a tribe called quest'. Damn, Q tip's looking like a real arsehole at the moment

  • Truthhurts

    Who knows who the fuck is right or wrong about what's going on between them. Because 99.9 percent of the heads on here know neither one of them you should shut the fuck up. You need to be blazing your own trail so someone could make possibly make a doc about your life but then again you're on here criticizing someone else from the sidelines. A bunch of bench warmers on here to scared to get in the game.

  • Anonymous

    what the fuck does Q want? damn if it wasnt for rapaport there wouldnt be a Doc. who did he want hype williams? yeah would like to see how that went, nuttin but lasers and light shows and two scenes of the group. shut up tip and be thankful, asshole.

    • Anonymous

      yeah pill i guess that would make sense as to why fans liked it and it got good reviews then huh?

    • The.Watcher

      @Pill - You're such a fucking imbecile, it's actually astonishing. No wonder hip hop is spit on by everyone else in the world, cos of idiots like you.

    • pill

      All QTip is saying is Michael Rappaport is a fucking Vulture who needs to have some fucking respect about the Group he is making a documentary on...Tell Your Story Griots!!! its not rocket science, people are tired of these pimps and wimps taking advantage of the Culture,bottom line ..that man has a right to speak against Rappaport ,you can see the shitty smirk on his face during the interview. Stop being leeches and get your own shit..

  • Anonymous

    being white and being privileged are two separate things. Black people or white people that tell others how or what to act like based on race are just fucking ignorant. Rapaport has done nothing but stay to hiphop

    • jack

      David Huh Wat. You're an idiot, and most likely more racist than any white devil you know. Shut the fuck up.

    • David Huh Wat

      WAIT WAIT WAIT...chill on phil....fact is...they exploit us....tip just sayn, damn white boy dont take me . my cuture...or hell a culture we share...dont take me and exploit it. we all just used to the exploitation of black people. whether done ny us or others..... we as black people the most hated (by ourselves and others) most incarcerated, impoverished peeps in america...and the rape-n just continues

  • Ben b

    He also sucked in next day air lol

  • Assassin221

    Yeah, those comments from Tip made no fucking sense. I wonder if Rapaport can even still bump Tribe shit after all this nonsense.

  • dlp

    I'm sick of this...I'm punchin' Q-Tip in the face if I ever meet him...You can't tell your own story because you'll lie to make yourself look good...Tip's a dick! Whatever happened, this dude filmed, that's what it is...

  • Hannibal

    and you can tell most of the commenters on hiphopdx are butt hurt white boys who think they own you so they get all flustered when you tell it like it is. because theyre interested in hip-hop, the world is supposed to stop and theres supposed to be a utopia where they're accepted, however when its back to the real world, theyre the same condescending privileged douchebags with no change in their personality whatsoever.. it ever occured to anyone that he spent years fighting for creative control and perhaps that's what it still is about. What makes rappaport's vision more accurate or acceptable than anyone. Q-Tip is the spokesperson but neither Jarobi or Ali showed up at the premiere

    • Anonymous

      if you believe "white privelledge" exists your retarded period

    • One of the few..

      As a one of the few grown white males who have spent their entire lives in black communities(pine hills orlando)..shut the fuck up. If your black and from an all black community I doubt youve seen racism like ive seen racism. You ever get knocked the fuck out in school cus ur race? how bout hospitalized? oh no? then shut the fuck up. how bout blatently called the n word? Ive been called honkey seriously by so many people..and when i actually moved out of my uncles house into my own apartment few streets over..my next door neighbor asked me if my dad owned the building before goin back in their apt and rudely shuttin the door..sweet old lady havent talked to her since. people need to realize its not race that matters anymore its how much money you have. thats the only privelage there is in life- what money your born into well that and luck. Until then theres no utopia for anyone born middle class or below.

    • Anonymous

      being white and being privileged is two separate things.

    • Che

      Yeah, it's apparent that a lot of these comments are comin from white people. But, as a black man, I would be as equally offended as these white guys if Rapaport said somethin about my culture (even though he would never). I dont think a lot of white people understand the phrase "white privilege" at all, honestly. Just my .02 cents.

  • Hannibal

    If it wasnt for MC Serch, Michael Rappaport would be the most abrasive wigger on the planet

  • Anonymous

    Q-Tip is bitchin a lil too much. His first statement shoulda been his last... its just more potent that way. BUT.. 'Remy' Rappaport is a fuckin condescending fuck. Hood pass revoked for several counts of shiesty behavior.

  • I'm At Work And Bored

    Q-Tip is a little bitch.

  • Hamid Adan

    Q-Tip seems like a weird guy. It's a documentary about your band as the masses see it. Like what's the problem? Michael Rapaport is a credible dude in the movie biz and this is his first directing gig. Like, just chill. I still would have wished that Consequence album (exec.prod by Q-Tip and Kanye) would have dropped too..but he doesn't wanna help out his cousin. It's cool to get everyone's attention, but dont start confusing people

  • bklynsfynest2000

    I read this interview and I see Q-tip needs to really sqaush this foolishness with Micheal rappaport as well as internally with a tribe called quest itself. One minute you praise the movie, the next you tell people don't see it or in tis case you shot subliminal hits at the director. he knew rappaport wanted to make this film, no one twisted Tip's arm or any one in tribe to do this movie. Let the movie lay the facts out and let the audience chose to take what ever from it they want. I'm going to see the movie....I suggest Tip take his confused mind and see it also.

  • R.Pgh

    Also, what kind of egomaniac would direct a documentary about themselves? The point of having someone else direct it is so people see an unbiased opinion. If Tip had directed it, it would probably show all the highs, none of the lows.

  • R.Pgh

    what's confusing is that Tip says Rappaport did a good job on the documentary and he doesn't want people to boycott it, then in the next sentence says rappers should do their own story. If you're for the movie, be for the movie. If you're against it, be against it. Just pick a fucking side.

  • Jack Merridew

    I'm so desapointed about q-tip especially with this e-mail thing I fought he was open minded but I was wrong fuck this ass hole

  • F. Rap

    Tip: You should've taken your own advice !

  • murdock

    Oh wow Tip is a black power weirdo and thats just corny!I love there music but now hes just sounding like a asshole..Tip really thinks that it was jsut black people who supported his music??Yea sure buddy

    • tipsta

      uh oh, white people kept their receipts, and they want their money back on all their tribe cds from the 90's..

  • Sensaye252

    The problem with niggas tellin' their own stories is that they always glorify their own story and leave the ugly parts out. It's like if someone explains a fight they were in and always make it sound like they won. You need a third party there to tell you how it really went down. I really don't think Michael Rapaport has an agenda other than making a good film. I think he's genuinely a Tribe fan and I don't see how he would benefit from falsifying their story. Niggas just get mad when they get exposed and it tarnishes their perfect little image. By the way, when the fuck does the film come out?

  • beezlebud

    Qtip just announced to the world that he is infact an ignorant tiny minded racist and apart of the problems with society not the solution It shouldnt matter what colour a persons skin is period, if an individual is a talented film maker why shouldnt they tell the story of a Hip Hop artist, Hip Hop isnt a black only culture today and it wasnt when it began, it has always had members within it of all skin colours mindsets like Qtips are the reasons why segregation still exists to an extent within society today and he should be embarrassed and ashamed of himself for not only exhibiting such ignorance but for being dumb enough to believe something like "white privellage" even exists

    • Anonymous

      @tipsta enjoy doin them shows for 50 people venues that you can only half fill with your irrellevent ass, jus dont do any in the UK coz ignorant lil mindstates like yours will only result in you gettin stomped

    • beezlebud

      what does my skin colour have to do with the FACT everything I just stated is 100% correct keep posting dumb comments though with your little ignorant undertones of sarcasm it serves to portray perfectly just how ignorant you are and how intellectual challenged your mind is

    • tipsta

      beezlebud, let me guess...you're white...thanks for the well thought out dose of morality. im going on tour..ill start spreadin your gospel

  • stuey

    Q-tips response most definitely has racial undertones, seeing as he doesn't mention any white rappers in his list of rappers with long history's in hip hop. Albeit the only great one would be Eminem, and he got his own movie in literally no time at all(which backs up Tips opinion that white people have a lot more opportunities). I'm really surprised that Q-tip is being so hostile toward Michael Rapaport as I was under the impression that Rapaport was only doing this documentary on account of himself being such a big fan of the Tribes music. I really hope that there are other motives behind Q-tips mistrust towards Rapaport, because that statement just makes him look racist, cynical, and generally bitter towards white people.

    • beezlebud

      no i'm not, infact if instead of making your ignorant lil comments on here you gathered evidence to support your posts you would of seen multiple articles on here where ive posted jus how over-rated and mediocre I think Eminem actually is

    • tipsta

      beezlebud, not an eminem fan? right..keep bouncin

    • beezlebud

      not an Eminem fan but Eminem got a movie based on his popularity not his race, he was the highest selling rapper when that happened n they realised it was perfect timing to capitalise, just like 50 cent getting his own movie right after he sold 10 million with his debut QTips just basically let the world know he's actually a racist which personally i find surprising (tho i shouldnt coz ive been told for years by people who know him that he's ignorant as fuck) its sad too see this sort of ignorance going on in the world today and even more disturbing when its generally the rappers who are percieved as the "intellectual" or "conscious" rappers that turn out to be the most ignorant ones and the racist ones

  • RIOTLIFE

    not the first time i´m hearing that q-tip is quite a douchebag personally. coming from black and white folk... if he feels hes portrayed as a bitch in this film its probably because he is a bitch. feel for rapaport. and phife...

  • Anonymous

    fuck yall sellout niggas sayin tip is wrong michael rappaport is a lame white boy tryin to be in the culture and like a eminem yall uncle tom ass niggas jump right on his dick...niggas will suck a white man off before they give a brother a handshake...fuckin queers

    • tipsta

      murdock, good ol irish name...thanks for using your wallet as leverage to dictate what people should do.sounds similar.. youre input is appreciated, by the entire world

    • murdock

      Oha nd let me end it here..Who the fuck you think put most of these hip hop groups out a black guy??Lol i dont think so my friend..Lets just say steve rifkind..wu tang mobb deep..and a few others were signed by a white guy so stfu please

    • murdock

      Ok then lets say that rick rubin and russell didnt make def jam as big as it was and run Dmc didnt do a song with aerosmith to bring hip hop to the masses...and so on and so on..I cant even believe that people are still racist and care what color someone is thats just crazy

    • Anonymous

      stfu idiot

  • ben b

    I think qtip should stick to shitty movies like hitchhikers guide to the galaxy and stop putting his foot in his mouth no1s gonna buy his shit anymore michael rapaport is the man he was dope in that movie with that 1 dude

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