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Taylor Swift and Katy Perry, plus 8 other music beefs that have been quashed

Looking back at the biggest feuds that have had harmonious resolves.

Looking back at the biggest feuds that have had harmonious resolves

Pop star Katy Perry squashed her long-running beef with Taylor Swift by making a cameo in her latest music video, 'You Need to Calm Down.' (Taylor Swift/YouTube)

After six years of public feuding, Taylor Swift and Katy Perry have finally ended their beef with the help of some chocolate chip cookies and a surprise cameo in Swift's latest music video, "You Need to Calm Down." The two, who had spent years showing their admiration for each other on social media and in person, apparently ended their friendship back in 2013 over dancers who left Swift's Red tour for Perry's Prism tour. Since then, the two had traded jabs via Twitter and Instagram posts as well as in their music, most notably Swift's 2015 single "Bad Blood." 

As much as social media has fuelled beefs between musicians, and other celebrities, it is much more satisfying to see people resolve their differences and come together. And Swift and Perry aren't the only ones. Below, we've listed some of the biggest musician beefs that have been quashed over the years. 


Taylor Swift vs. Nicki Minaj

Leading up to the 2015 MTV Video Music Awards, Swift and rapper Minaj had a heated exchange on Twitter over the nominations. Minaj, whose video for "Anaconda" was snubbed, took to the platform to call out the nominations, noting "if your video celebrates women with very slim bodies, you will be nominated for vid of the year." Swift, who was up for video of the year, took offence, telling Minaj, "I've done nothing but love and support you. It's unlike you to pit women against each other." A few days later, Swift returned to apologize for misunderstanding Minaj's original tweets. Cue to a month later, and the two hit the VMA stage to open the show together, officially ending any bad tensions that might've lingered. 

Drake vs. Tory Lanez, Meek Mill and Chris Brown

The Toronto rapper has had a long history of beefs, including ones with Pusha T, the Weeknd, Tory Lanez, Meek Mill, Chris Brown and Kanye West. While some of those tiffs are still withstanding, and some are in a constant state of flux, Drake has clearly patched things up with Lanez, Mill and Brown. This year, Drake hopped on Mill's Championships single "Going Bad," and earlier this month, he teamed up with Brown on the collaboration, "No Guidance."

Lady Gaga vs. Madonna 

Even though Lady Gaga had been compared to pop icon Madonna for years, tensions between the two artists didn't rise until 2011 when Gaga's single "Born This Way" was accused of sounding very similar to Madonna's 1989 hit, "Express Yourself." Madonna never addressed those claims head-on but did perform mash-ups of the songs at her concerts. In Gaga's 2017 documentary, Five Foot Two, Gaga says that even through Madonna's passive-aggressive behaviour, Gaga still admires her. Two years later, following her big Oscar win for her A Star is Born song "Shallow," Gaga attended a Madonna after-party where the two were seen cozying up for the cameras. Madonna posted a photo on Instagram with the caption "Don't mess with Italian girls." 

Aretha Franklin vs. Patti LaBelle

While soul singer Patti LaBelle has claimed that she doesn't have "beef with anyone," for years many have assumed that she and fellow legendary songstress Aretha Franklin were longtime rivals. Some have pointed at a clip of Franklin brushing off a woman who appears to be LaBelle at the 2014 Women of Soul concert at the White House as proof. (LaBelle denied that the woman in the video was her.) Then there was the time in 2016 when Franklin released a food line after LaBelle herself had had a successful run with a line of sweet potato pies. "Ms. Patti's gonna have to move that pie to the side!" Franklin reportedly said. But, when Franklin died last year, LaBelle put all rumours of a beef to rest by posting a touching tribute to the singer: "Aretha was a rare treasure whose unmatched musical genius helped craft the soundtrack to the lives of many." 

Maria Callas vs. Renata Tebaldi

Long before the press pitted Britney Spears against Christina Aguilera, the opera world instigated a feud between two stars, Italian soprano Renata Tebaldi and Greek-American Maria Callas. While their styles were different, many compared the two, who shared overlaps in repertoire and performed in many of the same venues, and a rivalry soon formed. Many have cited a 1950 performance in Rio de Janeiro as the height of this feud where both were scheduled to sing, and while they agreed to do no encores, Tebaldi went ahead and did two. As the years went by, the two would trade barbs in interviews but around the late '60s, their quotes in the press would go from nasty to kind. In 1978, Tebaldi said, as captured in Callas: A Documentary: "This rivality was really building from the people of the newspapers and the fans. But I think it was very good for the both of us, because the publicity was so big and it created a very big interest about me and Maria and was very good in the end." 

The Rolling Stones vs. Richard Ashcroft

In 1997, the Verve had one of the biggest songs in the world with "Bitter Sweet Symphony." But, the song's sample of a symphonic cover of the Rolling Stones' "The Last Time" led to legal action from the famous British rock band. At first the Verve had gotten permission to use the five-note segment in their song in exchange for 50 per cent of the song's royalties, but ABKCO, the company of former Stones manager Allen Klein, voided the agreement and sued Verve frontman Richard Ashcroft for 100 per cent of the royalties and publishing rights. Twenty-two years later though, Ashcroft has announced that the rights have been returned to him and his band by Rolling Stones members Mick Jagger and Keith Richards. In a statement, Ashcroft wrote: "This remarkable and life-affirming turn of events was made possible by a kind and magnanimous gesture from Mick and Keith, who have also agreed that they are happy for the writing credit to exclude their names and all their royalties derived from the song they will now pass to me." 

Blur's Dave Rowntree vs. Nardwuar

Nardwuar the Human Serviette is a master interviewer but his style can be off-putting for some. A case in point: the Canadian journalist's 2003 meeting with British rockers Blur. In the clip, which is described as "Blur torments Nardwuar," drummer Dave Rowntree is seen taking off Nardwuar's glasses, grabbing him by the arm and pushing him out of the way as he exits mid-interview. Eight years later, Rowntree addressed the incident on his website, admitting "this is definitely one of the things I'm ashamed of." Nardwuar soon responded to Rowntree's post by tweeting: "Thanks to Dave of Blur for this apology... I do appreciate it!"

Nas vs. Jay Z

The battle to become king of New York rap dates back decades but in the late-'90s and early 2000s, the biggest fight for the crown was between Nas and Jay Z. The two rappers started sneaking disses at each other as early as 1996 when some thought Nas's It Was Written opener, "The Message," contained a dig at Jay Z. (Nas later confirmed that the line in question was inspired by Jay Z, but not an attack on him.) But as the years went by, the jabs went from subtle to obvious as the two continued releasing songs that named and criticized each other, up until Jay Z retired with his 2003 record, The Black Album. But Jay Z didn't stay retired, returning just two years later with a comeback concert at which he invited a slew of guests including Nas. A year after that, Nas left Columbia Records and signed to Jay Z's Def Jam.

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