Ice-T has told the story of how Jay-Z ‘stole’ 99 Problems from him 99 times by now, and it seems Jay isn’t pleased about it.
According to the Law & Order: SVU star, the rap billionaire approached him at the 65th Annual Grammy Awards to hash out whatever differences they may have over the song.
“I’m at the Grammys and Jay-Z comes to me,” said Ice during his interview on Big Boy’s Neighborhood. “He says, ‘Ice, you know I love you, right?’ I say, ‘Yeah.’ He says, ‘Well, it’s on the internet that you mad.’ I said, ‘I’m not mad. They’re bringing up all kinds of interviews about it and they asked me the story, and I told them the true story.’”
“He goes, ‘Yeah man, but it’s no hard feelings’ … But I said, ‘Yo, well, you know, when you did ’99 Problems,’ at the end of the record you could’ve said, ‘Ice!’ You could’ve given me a little dap or something.’ I said, ‘But I’m not mad at it. What had happened was people wanted to know the story.’”
Ice-T recorded 99 Problems for his 1993 album “Home Invasion” after fortunately stumbling on the concept following a conversation with brother Marquis. Jay-Z would eventually release a remake of the song some 11 years later after paying for the publishing. Ice-T told Big Boy that he has no beef with Jay over the track, and blamed the controversy on the “social media era.”
Despite claiming “no harm, no foul” over Jay-Z’s version of the hit record. Ice-T revised 99 Problems several years later on Body Count’s fifth album “Manslaughter” in what he called an attempt to reclaim the song.
“99 Problems” is a sucker punch, so that a journalist will say “Oh, Ice-T remade Jay Z’s record.” No, Ice made that record 11 years before Jay Z,” Ice-T told Vulture back in 2014.
“I thought his version was dope, but Jay didn’t go out of his way to mention that it was a remake. In rehearsal, the band would play those licks from Jay’s record to tease me, and I would get up and say the original lyrics. So I decided that I would reclaim it on this album,” he added.
Watch Ice-T’s full Big Boy Neighborhood interview below.