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Kay vs. K’naan: Who wins this Somali rap battle?

Somali-Canadian rapper K’naan has had holes poked into his waving flag by a relatively new rapper and†countryman – Kay.

If you've been wondering whether the trend of rappers dissing one another died in the '90s, look no further than the hip-hop hotbed of Minnesota, where the artist known as Kay has taken Somali-Canadian rapper K'naan to task for failing to keep it real. In a song called T.I.A. Trouble in Africa (K'naan Diss), Kay, who calls himself Minnesota's Future and is also of Somali descent, accuses K'naan of "selling his soul," implies that K'naan no longer cares about the plight of Somalis and warns him to "watch the throne." The video on YouTube, which has been viewed all of 23,047 times since it was uploaded by Kay in July, ends with an image of K'naan in a coffin – a sight that would more disturbing if it wasn't preceded by one of a dog in sunglasses. One YouTube commenter has already pleaded for a ceasefire, lest there be a Tupac vs. Biggie "Somali version," but no one has yet suggested settling the score with a good, old-fashioned snowball fight. Come on, cold-weather rivals, that's how to keep it really real.

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About the Author

Dave McGinn writes about fitness trends for the Life section and also reports for Globe Arts. Prior to joining the Globe, he was a freelance journalist, covering topics from trying to eat Michael Phelps' diet to why the Joker is the best villain in comics history. He's working on improving his 10k time. More


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