Once the 2016 Grammys list was announced, Drake received a lot of press for his nominated single “Back To Back”. The single, which was about Meek Mill, easily became one of the biggest rap diss tracks of all-time. “Back” was an immediate (and original) response to Meek’s accusations that Drake used ghostwriters for most of his songs. While impressive and worthy of a Grammy nod, it wasn’t the first diss track to be nominated for the prestigious music award as many sites initially reported.
At the 2004 Grammys in a now-defunct category, Lil’ Kim’s diss track towards Eve and Foxy Brown was nominated for Best Female Rap Solo Performance. The song, which was produced by Kanye West, contains an epic sample of Irene Reid’s classic “Didn’t We”. Kim raps about how far ahead she was of other female rappers during her prime as the “queen bitch of hip-hop”. The most devastating (but extremely clever) bars from Kim was “even be at number two, your chances is slim / cause when God made Adam, he should’ve made Kim / I gave a few passes but I never forget / it’s enough I got to put up with this Doo Doo Brown chick”.
Both diss songs by Drake and Lil’ Kim were deserving of a Grammy nomination. Lil’ Kim’s nod in 2004 didn’t secure a victory since Missy Elliott’s “Work It” took home the prize. It’s also noteworthy to mention that Kim’s third album ‘La Bella Mafia’ was surrounded by controversy after the release of its first single “The Jump Off”, which likely played a significant role in not winning a Grammy for the diss track. Drake’s diss song, however, has been widely praised and revered as one of the greatest diss tracks in rap history. “Back” was such a blow towards Meek’s career that he hasn’t been able to respond with something of equal impact ever since. Either way, Lil’ Kim – and not Drake – holds the record for the “first rap diss song to be nominated for a Grammy. Watch the video for Lil’ Kim’s forever iconic diss track “Came Back For You” below.