Music producers Swizz Beatz and Timbaland created “Verzuz” to bring joy and entertainment to millions of hip-hop and R&B fans stuck indoors due to the coronavirus pandemic. But they may have ended up spawning a new cultural touchstone. The idea was simple: Pit two of the biggest names in music against each other on Instagram Live for a friendly head-to-head battle. No one would actually be declared the winner. But fans could hear their favorite songs and endlessly argue over who had better hits. The performances are powerful, the format is sometimes glitchy and the audience is altogether hilarious. In short, it’s a good time. And given the tragedy unfolding around us, Verzuz is a welcome distraction. Viewers tune in for the talent and songs, but especially for the comments section, where they often poke fun at the artists and their performances. Whether it’s technology issues, song choice or even what the artists are wearing, folks on social media come ready with the jokes. Like when Teddy Riley and Babyface got roasted for their age and inability to use Instagram during their first attempt at a Verzuz battle.
“This is like watching old folks use Jitterbug phones,” singer Toni Braxton tweeted during the battle in April.
With two long-standing and chart-topping careers, Snoop’s 43 Hot 100 hits and three No.1s: “Drop It Like It’s Hot” (featuring Pharrell) will be an interesting matchup against DMX’s 15 Billboard Hot 100 visits including “Party Up (Up In Here).” The highly-anticipated Verzuz battles in the past have featured some of the hottest entertainers including Lil Jon vs. T-Pain, Jill Scott vs. Erykah Badu, Alicia Keys v. John Legend, Beenie Man v. Bounty Killer, Ludacris v. Nelly, Babyface v. Teddy Riley, and Jagged Edge v. 112
Snoop Dogg and DMX will face off in a battle for the next Verzuz clash.
Launched in March, the Verzuz series is a clash concept from producers Swizz Beatz and Timbaland, and has seen the likes of Alicia Keys, Beenie Man, and Ludacris face off in music battles.
Next up, rappers DMX and Snoop Dogg will go head-to-head in what Verzuz have dubbed “The battle of the dogs”. Taking place on Wednesday 22nd July, the performance will be available to watch on IGTV and via Apple Music. Snoop Dogg announced the clash on his Instagram yesterday (15th) with the event poster captioned “I ain’t got no dogg in this fight! Yes u do who u got.”
Check out the post from Snoop Dogg below.
For a lot of fans, tuning in and singing along has been a welcome distraction from the scary news on TV. It’s transported listeners back in time — maybe to a better time — when life seemed easier and more carefree. And that’s the thing about Verzuz, it’s not just a Generation X or a millennial thing, it’s for everyone across all generations to come together. Flashbacks for some were new additions to playlists for others.