Wale must be a real lover of wrestling as he is no stranger to including references in his lyrics. Here he titles one of his tracks after a popular superstar from the 90s, Hacksaw Jim Duggan. Hacksaw was very much an American patriot with a loopy edge and carried around 2 x 4 wood piece as a weapon. Wale took this idea and changed it into 4 x 4 most likely referring to 4 x 4 creating 16 bars.
The DC rapper also mentions a few other connections to wrestling, namely Bobby Laschely and that move frequently mentioned in wrestling – the hip toss. Skyzoo and Wale no doubt spit some great stuff on this beat.
"Monday Night with the RAW, I’m Vince McMahon with a beat/Power-slamming them hammers, I get you handle for free"
Talking of leaders, Nicki Minaj gets the MMG bawse, Ricky Ross on the track who knows the horizons he wants to reach, when it comes to getting to the top. Well on his way there, Ross likens himself to the all-powerful figure in wrestling, Vince McMahon, but in the rapping realm. When it comes to Rick Ross, he doesn’t need a gun to take out his enemies, a (Mark Henry style) power slam is more than sufficient.
"But I'm giving it foundation when I write lyric/That anvil Neidhart minus bright knickers/Maybe not quite the star but my heart's in it/When Bret Hart meet Brett Farve/A sharp shooter well exceeding any figure four/You see my figure more or less six or more"
On this dope track from his Attention Deficit album, Wale weaves in the Hart Foundation, giving a special mention to Jim "The Anvil" Neidhart and his tight pink wrestling attire. Bret Hart's famous finishing manoeuvre, the “Sharp Shooter" - known as one of the best moves in wrestling history - also gets thrown in.
"It's real talk, shade niggas couldn't get a tan from me/Cause I get in the ring for that Vince McMahon money"
On this huge posse cut, Joe Budden shows he’s in it to make some major paper when referring to Vince McMahon. As the Chairman and CEO of WWE, his net worth of a staggering $1.5 billion has come from following in the footsteps of his father and accumulating the company.
It’s no surprise that Budden is after that sort of dough. Wrestling and the hip hop industry do have its similarities and getting in the ring is not too different from getting on stage and hustling in the rap business.
"Just One of Dem Days/A nigga feel like flossin’/A Stone Cold Stunna, bitch I'm Steve Austin"
Stone Cold Steve Austin was easily one of the coolest, baddest wrestlers in his heyday. On this Friday Night Lights mixtape track, J. Cole compares feeling like the man and his expensive ice to being like Steve Austin, who was always seen as a bad-ass, often sporting his own gold around his neck.
"The cycle is Shawn Michaels, heartbreak/And yeah, I like you but not enough to wife you"
As Asher Roth laments over his solo status, he takes a leaf out of the book of a wrestling fan-favorite known as The Heartbreak Kid, Shawn Michaels. Michaels’ character seduced all the women, but was known to break a heart or too. Asher so perfectly uses this reference to make it clear he’s in a commitment-free zone on the track.
"Dog it's nothin' to us, hot timer/The showstopper, off the top like Shawn Michaels/Hands in the air, light a blunt fix your hands in her hair"
New York’s Flatbush Zombies give us a joint about enjoying that purple haze. They compare the high to one of Shawn Michaels’ dope moves, the Flying Elbow, which would be executed from the top rope of the ring. No doubt when smoking their purple haze, these guys are as high as Shawn is when he’s on the rope.
"Fresh up out the shower to the sofa skip the bed part/A sharp shooter, young Bret Hart"
Wiz brings us a track where he compares his girl to a drug. Describing all the fun that they get up to Wiz even manages to turn Bret Hart’s sharp shooter into a sexual reference, as he and his girl forgo the bed and opt for the sofa.
"Let me bust that U-ie, bitch bust that open/Might spend a couple thou' just to bust that open/Rip it off no joking, like your name Hulk Hogan/Niggas move weight in the South but live in Hoboken"
It’s hard to deny that Nicki Minaj proves that she is the real deal here when it comes to her rap game. She also shows, just like many male rappers, she is more than capable of dropping a mere thousand at the strip club. But of course, if she’s throwing out that sort of money, she’s expecting strippers to take it all off just like Hulk Hogan would famously always rip his yellow vest off.
Cocaine Castles - ASAP Ferg
"Tryna wrestle demons like I'm fucking Hulk Hogan/Looking for the cure but I'm seeing no potion"
ASAP Ferg delves into the deep dark thoughts that go through his head when taking drugs. The ASAP Mob member specifically mentions "wrestling demons" likes he's Hulk Hogan when on a crazy trip. For those who don't know Hulk Hogan's popular character, he was known for being an American patriot, always heroic and fighting off the enemy.
"Top Dawg, Money Gang, bitch, we've been on/Clothesline the beat, nigga, John Cena/Been having stripes, can't walk in my Adidas"
Black Hippy took this remix to the next level! TDE has sure been on the money since taking off and it's difficult to deny the fact that they do "clothesline" the beat, comparing their mic skills to giving a signature, killer John Cena move.
"Undertaker, this the casket match/Pallbearer bring the urn out/They won't win til we quit, we don't burn out/DZA"
With Ab-Soul featuring on the track, Smoke DZA uses the metaphor of death to let his rival rappers know that he is killing them lyrically. DZA couldn't have picked a more fitting wrestler to mention here with The Grim Reaper himself, The Undertaker. An all time great, he was known for beating so many of his competitors in the famous casket match. Smoke DZA takes no prisoners as he looks to beat his rivals and bury them much like The Taker did, leaving Paul Bearer to deal with the ashes.
"Macho, man, Randy, Savage/Bands Andre the giant, taller than that/Call me Lex Luger, I got torture racks/You better keep your eyes open, for you take a trip with that undertaker/I'm a stone cold nigga, middle finger up like fuck a hater"
Waka takes inspiration from a wrestling legend on this track titled, "Randy Savage". However it's more than clear that the rapper is a fan on professional wrestling as he references some of the strengths of a few greats including Andre the Giant and Lex Luger.
"You roody poo's get abused/Hulk Hogan/Ultimate Warrior"
Produced by the White Russian, Action got together with Dana Coppafeel and Riff Raff to complete this track. Riff Raff comes at his haters calling them a "roody poo", one of The Rock's classic, hilarious one-liners, whilst also mentioning two greats Hulk Hogan and Ultimate Warrior.
"Triple doubles, two hoes and check please They love me on my Ric Flair shit "
Pusha T visibly appears to be big fan of wrestling legend Ric Flair, as he is referenced in more than just this one song from him. Here, Pusha tells the world that his fans love him in the same way fans went crazy for Ric Flair. He even gives us a few Nature Boy "Woooooo's."
"Focused might as well say cheese for the pictures Ohh, I’m about to go Andre the Giant"
Lil Wayne is nowhere near the height of Andre the Giant. The Giant was one hell of a wrestler who sadly passed away prematurely. Andre wrestled and beat some greats in his time. So, if Weezy is going Andre the Giant on you, you can be sure he's doing it big.
Fuck Out My Face - ASAP Ferg
"Oh, shit, who let these Hulk Hogan hoes in with nose and chest open"
Ferg seems rather partial to his Hulkster references. If you're wondering what or who "Hulk Hogan hoes" are, remember back to when Hogan used to go crazy and rip his shirt, revealing he massive chest? Well, these "hoes" are seductively revealing their cleavage, looking out for flyest guys. Ferg doesn't seem to be a fan though!
Triple H also gets a sweet mention on the track. - "#1 Stunna, Camoflage Hummer, nose job had to paint white for the summer/I'm a hit stick drummer, heavy weight Triple H Hall of Fame head hunter".
"I would Gasol you niggas, but I'm in no position/I undertaker kill it, I Hulk Hogan rip it/Super high, superfly Snuka Under A Nigga"
Yep, Wale again, clearly a big wrestling buff! He jumps on this track to give us a dope freestyle, and compares his talent to three wrestling superstars in the process. Wale compares his rap skills to the Undertaker’s dominance in the ring, Hogan’s impressive power to rip his shirt, and the talents of the mind-blowing and high-flying Jimmy Fly Snukka.
"Been pimpin' since Hulk Hogan was NWO/Yeah, I’m wild, Drizzy tough, and the Kid vicious/The three horsemen, we just need Sid Vicious"
On "Stunt Hard", Lil Wayne compares himself and fellow big-time Young Money members Drake and Kid Kidd to have the rapport and status that the Four Horsemen did. The Four Horsemen were responsible for getting WCW some very high ratings back in the day, interchangeably made up of Ric Flair, Ole Anderson, Barry Windham and Sid Vicious. Lil Wayne is still in need of his fourth horseman though.
“I DDT the pussy, I’m Jake the Snake to you. I put ‘em in the coffin, I’m the Undertaker too.”
Loso gives us a mean freestyle over Young Money’s “Roger That”. Fab’s lyrics are always full of innuendo and creativity. Boasting about his skills on the mic and his success, which all comes with the money, girls and more, he lets us know about his special ability to “DDT" the pussy, Jake The Snake’s finishing manoeuvre. The New York rapper also informs he won’t hesitate to metaphorically kill his rivals as once again the Undertaker comes up, with his known obsession with caskets.
Pay Per View - Ruff Ryders
Ruff Ryders most likely managed to get most of the WCW roster into this track in some form or another! This joint, which includes verses from Drag-On, Eve and The L.O.X., was created for WCW’s soundtrack at the time WCW Mayhem. This is through-in and through-out WRESTLING!
"I'm Hulk Hogan, Randy Savage, Bob Backlund/Part-acting, ha ha, who they think they car jackin’”
Cam’ron begins his verse mentioning some great wrestlers who were rivaled with each other. Stating it’s “part acting”, he pokes fun at professional wrestling for being fake, wondering who they think they’re fooling. This could also be a call out to some of the pretenders amongst Cam’ron’s own rap rivals.
You may or may not remember that The Rock blew up in a huge way in the early noughties through "Laying The Smackdown", and his catchy catchphrases. Of course a big star, needs a big artist behind their music which lead to Method Man creating The Rock’s theme tune which would be used on WWE’s Thursday night show Smackdown.
"Vocabulary spills I'm Ill plus Matic/I freak beats, slam it like Iron Sheik/Jam like a Tec with correct techniques"
Nas spoke candidly about his love for Mary Jane on this track, which is the last joint on his Illmatic album. But always one to prove his excellence in the rap game, he was sure to tell us he slams it like Iron Sheik, a wrestling Hall of Famer who was a popular “baddy” and famous for his Iranian Drop – the Two-Handed chokeslam.
HNHH gives you 25 mean professional wrestling references in hip hop!
Professional wrestling and hip hop – sounds like an odd combination, but the two cultures that have a lot in common and quite a lot of respect for each others craft. Wrestling federations, whether it has been WWE, WCW, or TNA have all dabbled in hip hop. These companies have frequently collaborated with the genre to make some dope theme tunes for wrestlers. You may also recall that some wrestling superstars, such as John Cena and R-Truth, have even dropped a freestyle or two!
But pro wrestling and hip hop both include a level of entertainment that requires grit, strength and talent. Wrestlers get in the ring night-in and night-out, whilst rappers get on a stage. It’s only natural then that our favorite rappers see the strength of these wrestlers and respect them enough to give them that special mention in their tracks. Wrestlers and rappers share a similar grind, the job comes with fame, putting yourself out there, as well as the money and often the celebrity status. Of course, hip hop artists also need that same sort of bragging style that wrestlers have on the mic.
Take a look at some of these dope wrestling mentions we found in rap music. Let us know your favourite reference too in the comments!