Rakim shows some love to Slim Shady.
It's no secret that Eminem holds Rakim, the Godfather of the modern flow, in high regard. Consider "Rap God," in which Em deemed himself a "Product Of Rakim." Or "I'm Back," wherein Em busts out a macabre flip on Rakim's "My Melody" bars. The trail of respect runs deep on Em's side, and the former Aftermath legend has been quick to reciprocate when asked. Most recently, Ra made sure to show some love to Em during a recent interview on Shade 45, speaking with DJ Whoo Kid.
Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images
"Eminem gravitates toward you more," explains Who Kidd, drawing a comparison between Rakim and Big Daddy Kane. "He's a beast," responds Rakim. "That's my man." An open co-sign during a time in which Em's credibility has been increasingly questioned, particularly by elder statesmen like Brand Nubian's Lord Jamar. Whoo Kidd springboards off the point, asking whether Ra has more respect for lyricists or a more songwriting-inclined artist.
"It depends," responds the legendary emcee. "You got some rappers who make dope songs, and you got lyricists that make us rewind the song. It's like, I'm still a fan of hip-hop. It could be male, female, white, black. I know it when I hear it, and I love to hear it. People pushing the envelope, keeping the genre alive." There you have it, another case of real recognize real. Respect to both Rakim and Eminem, true beasts behind the mic. It's a shame they never collaborated on any released music, though there's no telling what Dr. Dre's vaults are hiding.