Backstreet Boys & Drake Beef? Band Calls Out Rapper For 'The Call' vs. 'Hotline Bling'
There is a new beef brewing for Drake with a surprising opponent -- namely pop sensation of the past, The Backstreet Boys. The band's heyday was in the late 90's and early 2000's (not to say that they haven't made a bit of a reappearance in 2015) and now they're back to call out Drake and compare their hit of yesteryear, "The Call," to "Hotline Bling."
According to Billboard, the band tweeted to Drake, "Not to cause any beef @Drake... but before there was Hotline Bling... there was The Call," and then further tweeted a photo of "1-800-THECALL1-800-THECALL FREE," which is reportedly an update of the track's album art to further instigate the feud. "The Call" was one of the many hits off of their 2000 smash album, Black & Blue.
— backstreetboys (@backstreetboys) October 23, 2015
While comparisons between "The Call" and "Hotline Bling" are completely out of left field, aside from the fact that both are love songs that deal with telephone communication, there are some similarities between "Hotline Bling" and rapper D.R.A.M's "Cha Cha." There was recently a controversy over that and D.R.A.M claimed that his performance in Toronto was overshadowed by the many comparisons of both tracks. The release of a new visual for the smash hit on the same night as D.R.A.M's performance in his home city of Toronto may have had a hand in dampening his fellow rapper's show. "Just performed in Toronto for the 1st time tonight," D.R.A.M tweeted shortly after his performance, "Sweet cus I'm out here sharing my music, my sound with people...Bitter though because all I'm seeing is Cha Cha/Hotline Bling comparisons on my timeline," according to Pitchfork. He further wrote "Yeah, I feel I got jacked my record... But I'm GOOD."
Yeah, I feel I got jacked for my record...But I’m GOOD. — D.R.A.M. not DRAM (@ONLY1DRAM) October 20, 2015
Critics reportedly feel that the the vocal lines that both sing along are way too similar and that the sample of Timmy Thomas's "Why Can't We Live Together," bears comparison to "Cha Cha" in terms of chord progression, which rapper D.R.A.M did by using a sample of Super Mario.
Drake recently explained some of these comparisons in an interview with The Fader saying, "You know, like in Jamaica, you'll have a ride and it's like, everyone has to do a song on that. Imagine that in rap, or imagine that in R&B. Imagine if we got one beat and every single person - me, this guy, this guy, all these guys - had to do a song with that one beat," seemingly admitting that the two songs are at least in part based on each other.
He further said to the magazine, "So sometimes I'll pick a beat that's a bit, like, sunnier, I guess is the word you used, than usual and I just try my hand at it. And that's kind of what 'Hotline Bling' was. And I loved it. It's cool. I've been excited by that sort of creative process."
While D.R.A.M and now the Backstreet Boys definitely seem to have some major issues with Drake's number 1 hit, Queen Bey herself did share a clip of herself dancing to it on Instagram. It looks like he does seem to have some big names in his corner.