Pusha T is one of our foremost beef connoisseurs, so it makes sense that one of the nation’s purveyors of fine meat sandwiches would recruit him to help them start a rap feud. On March 21, the rapper posted a song on his Twitter taking aim at McDonald’s, specifically the brand’s Filet-O-Fish sandwich.
“I’m the reason the whole world love it, now I gotta crush it,” he raps, an allusion to Pusha’s long-standing claim that he helped write the McDonald’s jingle. Released in 2003, Justin Timberlake’s “I’m Lovin’ It” is credited as the original song, though the catchphrase itself actually harkens back to a German McDonald’s ad. The rumor of Pusha’s involvement has been the subject of significant debate, though, at the very least, his vocals appear on at least one version of the Timberlake song used by the restaurant giant.
In a Rolling Stone interview released the same day as the Arby’s song, Pusha reasserted that he was involved in writing the McDonald’s jingle, saying, “I am solely responsible for the ’I’m Lovin‘ It’ swag and the jingle of that company. That’s just real…I did it at a very young age at a very young time in my career where I wasn’t asking for as much money and ownership. It’s something that’s always dug at me later in life like, ‘Dammit, I was a part of this and I should have more stake.’”
In recent years, McDonald’s has partnered with rappers like Travis Scott and Saweetie to create custom meals, while Lil Nas X was named the “Chief Impact Officer” of Taco Bell. If McDonald’s wants to escalate things, they should throw a hefty bag at Drake, perhaps Pusha’s no. 1 foil. The pair had an electric war of words in 2018, culminating in the scathing “The Story of Adidon.” And the chain certainly has the financial resources to do so, as it reported global revenue exceeding $23 billion in 2021.
It should be noted that “Spicy Fish Diss” does a lot less repping for Arby’s new limited edition fish sandwich than it does bashing the McDonald’s counterpart. “How dare you sell a square fish asking us to trust it / A half slice of cheese, Mickey D’s on a budget?” Pusha points out. And, in classic Pusha fashion, he closes the verse with a winking (or, I guess, snorting?) reference to cocaine. “Our fish is gonna tip that scale,” he says. Between this diss track and the time he popped up rapping over the Succession theme song, Pusha T might be the “I’m sorry he’s rapping about what?” artist of our generation.