The Lox, triumphant in Verzuz

Early August, Verzuz – the staple food of the pandemic era which started on Instagram Live and within a year has grown into a multiplat...


Early August, Verzuz – the staple food of the pandemic era which started on Instagram Live and within a year has grown into a multiplatform content powerhouse with artists “battling” hit for hit – hosted its first event live, paid and in person. The night featured two of the most important hip-hop teams in New York history, the Lox and Dipset, competing at the Hulu Theater in Madison Square Garden.

From a distance, it looked like a slight shift – Dipset, Cam’ron, and his extended team are flashy and theatrical, and the Loxes are skillful and relentless. But the battle took place in a boxing ring, and it set the tone: The Lox came out triumphant.

On this week’s Popcast, a conversation about New York rap in the 1990s and early 2000s, the long-forgotten tension of pop crossover, and a night that brought the spirit of battle back to Verzuz, who had started to turn into a festival of love.

Guests:

  • Longtime hip-hop journalist Jayson Rodriguez and Backseat Freestyle newsletter editor

  • Jayson Buford, who writes music for Rolling Stone, Pitchfork and others

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