If Pusha T meant for “Exodus 23:1” to be a diss, Rico Beats didn’t find out until the fans did.
In an interview with MTV News, the producer insists that he heard no indication that Pusha was going at Drake or Lil Wayne on the song, as has been widely speculated.
“Honestly, when we were in the room listening to that record, I didn’t hear none of these guys’ names brought up,” he said. “It was none of that. Dream got in his zone and he went in the booth. Pusha got his pen, like I didn’t hear nobody mentioned.”
Regardless of Pusha’s intentions, Lil Wayne wasted no time responding, first via Twitter, then by releasing “Goulish,” on which the Young Money general name-checks Pusha. Since then, Pusha’s brother No Malice has responded via Twitter, seemingly referring to a mid-2000s photo of Lil Wayne and Cash Money Records CEO Birdman kissing.
Rico revealed that Pusha requested something dark for the album, and found inspiration in a Notorious B.I.G. classic. “I went down to the studio and I was just listening to Biggie. I was just playin’ pure Biggie. So [“What’s Beef”] came on and once I heard [B.I.G.’s] ‘ha-ha-ha-ha’ [vocal] I was like, ‘Oh shit.'”
Rico has confirmed that he will continue to collaborate with Pusha T in the future.