Since the turn of the century, 50 Cent has reigned as rap’s supervillain. 50 has mastered the art of the diss track ("How to Rob," "Back Down," "Piggy Bank") while amassing a list of enemies that includes everyone from superstar rappers (Nas, Fat Joe, Ja Rule, Jadakiss, Kanye West, Rick Ross) and label heads (Diddy, Jimmy Iovine) to media moguls (Oprah, Wendy Williams) and drug kingpins (Jimmy "Henchman" Rosemand, Kenneth "Supreme" McGriff).
Even 50’s affiliates have fallen victim to his wrath, as the G-Unit general has spent the past two decades beefing with former crew members Game, Lloyd Banks, Tony Yayo, and Young Buck. The crew’s latest internal conflict has played out over the past several weeks, as tension between 50 and Buck has escalated into a full-scale feud that’s centered on sex scandals, music video removals, and monetary disputes.
As 50 Cent and Young Buck continue to trade barbs on social media, let’s take a look at the history of 50 beefing with current and former G-Unit members.
2004: Tensions rise between 50 Cent and Game
The feud between 50 Cent and the Game began as a power struggle between two alpha dogs. When Game signed to Dr. Dre’s Aftermath imprint in 2003, 50 was not only the label’s biggest star, but one of the most popular rappers alive. Later that year, during production of G-Unit’s multi-platinum debut album Beg For Mercy, Dr. Dre and Interscope CEO Jimmy Iovine decided to have Game join G-Unit, marketing him as a loyal member of 50 Cent’s camp. From there, 50 Cent was brought in to work on Game’s debut album The Documentary, thus beginning the friction that would ultimately escalate into a full-scale beef.
By late 2004, buzz surrounding The Documentary had reached feverish heights, in part thanks to 50 Cent, who helped pen the album’s first two singles, “Westside Story” and “How We Do,” the second of which became a top 5 hit that November. With Aftermath rallying behind its new upstart, 50 said he felt neglected, as his sophomore LP The Massacre (originally slated for a February 18 release) was pushed back a month in order to accommodate Game’s major label debut.
In January 2005, The Documentary debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200, selling 586,000 copies in its first week. 50 Cent appeared on three songs, including the LP’s third single, “Hate It Or Love It,” which showcased the seemingly magical chemistry between two of hip-hop’s biggest young stars. At the time, it looked like a perfect union, but just a month later, everything would come crashing down...
February 2005: 50 Cent kicks Game out of G-Unit live on Hot 97, shots fired outside station
Although the seeds for Game’s public banishing from G-Unit were planted months earlier, the moment that ultimately set 50 off took place just days before, when Game told Hot 97 that he was going to do a song with Fif’s rival Nas and explained that he had no intention of getting involved in his beefs with Jadakiss and Fat Joe, among others.
A few days later, on February 28, 2005, 50 showed up to Hot 97, ready to start a war. Accompanied by Tony Yayo, Lloyd Banks and Olivia, 50 kicked Game out of G-Unit live on air, telling Funkmaster Flex that he felt Game was disloyal. Ever the king of pettiness, Fif didn’t hesitate to claim that Interscope was intent on dropping Game until 50 lent his hand to various cuts on The Documentary, even adding that he was making more money off The Documentary than Game was, and that he wrote more choruses than he was credited for.
Seeking retaliation for 50’s comments, Game and his crew arrived at Hot 97 while G-Unit was still on the air. After they were not allowed into the building, Game’s associates got into a shootout outside the radio station, which left one man, Kevin Reed of Compton, CA, injured. Back inside, Flex’s show was audibly interrupted, and his interview with 50 ended abruptly.
June 2005: Game starts G-Unot campaign, drops diss track “300 Bars N Runnin”
Less than two months after publicly squashing his beef with 50 at a charity function in Harlem that March, Game reignited the feud in June when he started a “G-Unot” campaign at Summer Jam (and subsequently dropped his You Know What It Is Vol. 3 mixtape). The tape’s standout song was “300 Bars N Runnin,” the first and most impressive 50-aimed diss track Game has laid to wax. Attempting to end 50’s career with an unending, 14-minute verse, the song was filled with quotables: “You sell records, but a G you not/Acting big on the radio, to me you not/You can ask Mister Cee who hot/Tony Yayo I bet 10 Gs you flop/Run up on that new 300 C you got.” Over the second half of 2005, Game would release two more mixtapes geared at dissing his former crew: November’s Ghost Unit and December’s Stop Snitchin, Stop Lyin.
February 2006: 50 Cent responds with “Not Rich, Still Lyin’”
After dissing Game in the music video for “Piggy Bank” (which depicts the rapper as Mr. Potato Head, wearing a “wanksta” headband) 50 Cent finally responded on record with “Not Rich, Still Lyin.” The title alone is arguably as good of a diss as the actual track, serving as both a comedic response to Game’s G-Unit aimed mixtape/DVD, Stop Snitchin, Stop Lyin, as well as a parody of his own debut album, Get Rich or Die Tryin.
July 2006: 50 Cent mocks Game on mixtape cover
You Know What It Is Vol. 3’s “300 Bars N Runnin” overshadows the not-so-subtle shot Game takes at 50 on the cover of the DJ Skee mixtape, which pictured the West Coast rapper standing with a saw in one hand and Fif’s head in the other. One year later, 50 returned the favor with the artwork for his July ’06 mixtape with DJ Whoo Kid, G Unit Radio Part 21: Hate It Or Love It Verse 1, which includes a photo of Game in a strip club wearing a G-string. Whether 50 superimposed Game’s head on a stripper’s body, or if Game was in fact a stripper in his past life (which both 50 and Game’s stepfather claim) there’s no denying that the decision has influenced rap beefs in recent years, most recently Pusha-T.
April 2008: 50 Cent drops Young Buck from G-Unit live on Hot 97
By the spring of 2008, Young Buck’s role in G-Unit had noticeably diminished. He had appeared with less frequency on the crew’s mixtapes and was completely absent from their latest release, Return of the Body Snatchers, which dropped in February 2008. Just like it happened with Game, Buck’s abrupt exit came after he spoke openly about the group’s inner workings in an interview with XXL for the magazine's May '08 issue. On April 7, just weeks after the interview was published, 50 officially booted Young Buck from G-Unit live on the air, telling Hot 97’s morning show hosts, DJ Envy, Miss Jones and Michael Shawn: "You can take this as official notice." Then he dropped Buck from the crew.
June 2008: 50 Cent leaks phone call with Young Buck, who responds with diss track “Taped Conversation”
After publicly dropping Young Buck from G-Unit live on the air, 50 doubled down by releasing a taped phone conversation of a painful discussion between the two, which found Buck begging forgiveness for his wrongdoings while breaking down in tears. "I understand I done got off track," Buck said. "I don't know what to do... A n***a just want that same family feel like it's always been. I know I'm outta line, I don't want you to dismember me from the crew, honestly...I'm just trying to make you happy."
One day after it hit the internet, Young Buck retaliated with "Taped Conversation," taking aim at G-Unit’s general, rapping: "Look at 50, what he do just to get fame/Record my phone call when I spoke from the heart/That was a year ago, this was a joke from the start/You a ho, I know/The only people that record conversations is 5-0."
November 2009: 50 Cent disses Game and Young Buck on “So Disrespectful”
Despite several apology attempts from Game, 50 proved he was still holding a grudge toward the former G-Unit member in late 2009, when a Game-aimed diss track showed up on his fourth studio album, Before I Self Destruct. Produced by Tha Bizness, "So Disrespectful" featured some choice words directed at a handful of 50’s foes (including Young Buck and his ex-girlfriend) but it saved most of its venom for Game. 50 ended the first verse by rapping: "Come on, Game, you'll never be my equal/ Your homies shoot dogs, my homies shoot people/See, me, I'm what you never gonna be/ I'm in that tax bracket you're never gonna see."
September 2010: 50 Cent calls out Lloyd Banks over Eminem feature
Not even 50’s protege, Lloyd Banks, has been immune to his wrath. Once thick as thieves, the relationship between 50 and Banks hit a snag at the top of the decade, as the former tweeted his disappointment with Banks not wanting Eminem to appear on his third studio album, H.F.M. 2. Over a series of tweets, 50 took credit for Banks’ career and expressed his disappointment as a leader of G-Unit, before threatening to release a recording of 50 and Eminem confronting Banks backstage.
July 2012: 50 Cent says Lloyd Banks and Tony Yayo need to get themselves together
50’s shit-talking isn’t merely reserved for low blows. Just like any good boss, he prides himself on leadership, even if it’s at the expense of publicly outing his affiliates for their work ethic. During a period in which he wasn’t speaking with Lloyd Banks or Tony Yayo, 50 explained why he wasn’t satisfied with either’s approach to creating. In an interview with XXL, he said, "They just sit there and wait. When someone works for you, you have the habit of dealing with things by not dealing with them. You may get in the regimen of coming over and doing it for them."
April 2014: 50 Cent likens Tony Yayo and Lloyd Banks to spoiled milk, says they’re Troy Ave’s ‘hype men’
Weeks after comparing Yayo and Banks to “spoiled milk” in an interview with The Breakfast Club, Fif sent more shots at the OG G-Unit members in an interview with Hot 97. "They actually like Troy Ave's hype men now, 50 said, referencing appearances on Troy's "Show Me Love" and "Your Style,” respectively. "That's not a shot. They're there as the supporting cast.” As always, 50 assured that he only wants the best for his affiliates. "They're like my little brothers," he added. "I'd like for them to work to sustain their interests in the public."
June 2014: 50 Cent reunites with G-Unit at Summer Jam
By 2014, G-Unit was removed from its apex, both musically and in terms of group relations. In fact, the crew was arguably the most unstable it’d ever been, as 50 had spent the spring tossing verbal grenades at Tony Yayo and Lloyd Banks. But that summer, nearly six years after 50’s relationship with Young Buck hit rock bottom, Fif shocked the rap game by performing at Summer Jam for the first time in ten years and then bringing Banks, Buck, and Yayo on stage with him to perform a medley of G-Unit’s biggest hits. It was the first time the crew had performed together since 2008. But, like always, the reunion was short-lived.
February 2016: 50 Cent calls out Lloyd Banks for taking photo with Game
On the list of Things You Should Never Do If You Want to Avoid a Beef With 50 Cent, cozying up with any one of 50’s sworn enemies tops the list, as evidenced by 50’s feuds with Game and Young Buck (both of which started because 50 felt that each rapper was disloyal). And yet, just like his former G-Unit affiliates, Lloyd Banks dug his own grave with 50 in February 2016, when a picture of him and Game was posted on the latter’s Instagram page. 50 was quick to repost the picture with his own take on their "reunion," writing: "What do you see when you look at this picture? I see confusion, I'm not sure if it's just me, I'm a Cancer sh-t don't get old with me. I never ask for trouble but I really don't have a problem with it I'm different. The question isn't how I feel about it, but how dose ( Lodi Mac ) feel about it? Some shit is just better off left alone. #EFFENVODKA #FRIGO #SMSAUDIO."
August 2016: Game and 50 Cent seemingly squash beef at L.A. strip club
After exchanging hundreds of diss tracks and verbal shots across ten-plus years, one of the most notable rap beefs of the 21st century came to an end in (where else?) a strip club. During a 50 Cent-hosted event at the Ace of Diamonds strip club in Los Angeles, Game took the stage and offered to squash their long-storied feud. "I fuck with 50," he announced to the crowd in a video posted on Twitter. "What happened that shit was 12 years ago. N****s ain’t on that shit…It’s 2016. Ain’t nobody on that old shit." Unlike their public "truce" in March 2005, this reconciliation seemed genuine, as TMZ posted footage of the two kicking it in the VIP section.
June 2018: 50 Cent announces Lloyd Banks’ exit from G-Unit
As soon as 50 squashed his beef with Game in August 2016, fans expected that his beef with Lloyd Banks was over, too, considering their falling out happened after Banks was pictured alongside Game in an Instagram post earlier that year. But in the summer of 2018, fans were forced to question whether the two OG G-Unit members were in fact on good terms, as 50 took to Instagram to announce that Banks was no longer a member of the crew. More shocking than Banks’ departure, though, was the seemingly kind way 50 went about telling social media, as he showed his former lyrical lieutenant love. "Check out my boy Lloyd bank$. New Mixtape coming soon!" Fif wrote along with a photo of Banks. "Independence Day, he is doing his own thing and you know it’s gonna be loaded with bars. (Check him out) PLK get the strap." Was a genuine Curtis Jackson or 50 Cent the Troll behind the post? We may never know.
March 2019: 50 Cent posts and deletes audio of Young Buck discussing sex scandal
A decade removed from their initial falling out, 50 Cent and Young Buck got back to beefing in 2019. Their most recent feud can be traced back to the beginning of February, when Buck called out 50 for trying to sabotage his career after the former’s music was removed from streaming services and a cease and desist note was sent to his distribution label from G-Unit Records. Ever the king of pettiness, 50 responded by taking to Instagram and sharing an alleged audio recording of Buck discussing his transgender sex scandal. The since-deleted clip features a man, who seems to be Buck, telling a woman to "take that shit down,” in reference to a video that allegedly shows him performing a sexual act with a transgender woman.
April 2019: 50 Cent trolls Young Buck's alleged transgender relationship, Buck challenges 50 to a rap battle
One month after stirring the pot about Buck and his alleged relationship with a trans woman, 50 shared an Instagram post that sarcastically promoted Buck's forthcoming studio album, claiming that it would be a hit with the LGBT community. "Young Buck is almost ready to drop his album," 50 wrote in the since-deleted post. "He worked hard on this project. I told him his personal choice to date a tran sexual [sic] will confuse some of his core audience but with the support of the LGBT he should be fine [...]"
Hours later, Buck took to Instagram Live and called out 50 with several threats and a challenge: "If you such a real n***a, why don’t you let me go? You understand? And we’ll fight the battle like that. Whatchu scared for, sucka? Line me up like Ja Rule, n***a. Go bar-for-bar with me, n***a. Play that game. You scared? You wanna do sucka shit. You ain’t gonna get away from me though."
From there, Buck suggested that he had dirt on 50, even threatening to expose him as soon as he gets out of his contract with G-Unit: "Tell 'em you got your panties in a bunch 'cause I'm tryin' to move forward with my own career. We not gonna talk about all the other shit, unless you want to. Understand what I'm sayin'? [...] We gon' get real. I can blow your shit up, n***a. For real, for real. I'll burn your career down. I'll Ja Rule you."
May 1, 2019: 50 Cent mocks Young Buck with GoFundMe page
50 followed up his sarcastic promotion of Buck’s new album with an even more petty marketing ploy, allegedly opening a GoFundMe page to raise money for Buck. In a since-deleted post on Instagram, 50 wrote, "Help Young buck get away from Fofty, just make a donation and set your favorite rapper free." He added, "#fofty wants his fucking money. Lol"
May 6, 2019: 50 Cent deletes Young Buck's "Road Trip" video from YouTube
Another troll job by 50 found the G-Unit ringleader deleting Young Buck's music video for "Road Trip" from YouTube for copyright infringement. He took to Instagram to share his power move with a screenshot that read, "This video is no longer available due to a copyright claim by G-Unit Records, Inc." In the caption, 50 added, "Check out Bucks New Video. Fofty I want my money Mondays."
May 8, 2019: Young Buck taunts 50 Cent with #Foffy Instagram post
After suffering a seemingly knockout blow from 50 (who offered up his most pettiest move to date by removing Young Buck’s "Road Trip" video from YouTube) Buck responded by fighting petty with petty, firing back in a since-deleted Instagram post. Under a screenshot of his new music video "Road Trip" Buck wrote: "Aye #Foffy or whatever tf yo name is, You forgot to take this one down... Hatin a$$ mtf you gotta pay for something to own it #OpenTheBooks."
May 20, 2019: 50 Cent continues transphobic campaign against Young Buck
Nearly two months after beginning his 2019 beef with Young Buck, 50 is back to square one: trolling his former G-Unit brother’s alleged transgender relationship. 50 shared a clip of a video interview featuring GlamourPurfek, introduced as someone who "used to deal with rapper Young Buck." In the clip, GlamourPurfek discusses her relationship with Buck, mentioning his visits to her Nashville home. In the caption, 50 wrote: "Buck Gay as a motherfucker."