This week, one of hip-hop’s longest-running feuds heated up when Sean “Diddy” Combs — aka Puff Daddy, aka Love — stopped by The Breakfast Club to issue a challenge to his detractors. “Anybody that thinks I owe them something, show me the receipt and you’ll get paid within 24 hours,” he said.
Well, it didn’t take long for the number-one former Bad Boy Records artist who says Diddy owes him money to respond. Mase, who released three albums under the Bad Boy banner and has maintained that Puff withheld royalties from him for decades, responded, calling Diddy’s outburst a case of sour grapes from Mase refusing to allow him to share the stage at Mase’s 3 Headed Monster Tour with Cam’ron and Jadakiss. He also insinuated that the “receipts” in question were located at Diddy’s mother Janice Combs’ house.
It’s all very dramatic, yet still old hat for these two, who have been arguing about this same subject for 20 years. So, how did the beef between Diddy and Mase start?
After Mase retired from music in 1999 to go into ministry, he returned twice — once in 2004 with the album Welcome Back, which was a disappointment compared to his fan-favorite debut Harlem World and its follow-up Double Up, and again in 2009, when he presented Diddy with documents during a live radio interview demanding to be released from his Bad Boy contract. While Diddy did sign the docs, it was later revealed that they only allowed Mase to appear on songs with other artists; he was otherwise still contractually obligated to Bad Boy Records.
In 2012, Mase told fans he was no longer under contract with Bad Boy, but since then, he’s been vocal about his issues with Puff, writing in a since-deleted Instagram post that Puff refused to sell him the publishing from his three albums, even though he offered $2 million against his original $20,000 advance from 1996. (This could be specious, as it’s been widely reported Mase actually signed for $250,000.) He also accused Puff of sabotaging his set at Lovers & Friends Festival .
Funnily enough, Mase himself was recently accused of malfeasance by another New York artist whose career he tried to help jumpstart, Fivio Foreign. While he denied Fivio’s accusation, it remains to be seen whether the incident has given him some newfound perspective on Diddy’s side of their feud. If it has, it certainly didn’t make him empathetic to his former employer’s position.