[Editor’s Note: These are the outtakes to the edited White Noise article that appears in the June 2009 issue of XXL. In the outtakes, Alchemist, MC Serch, Ill Bill, Paul Wall and RA the Rugged Man discuss if Eminem is not considered the best MC of all time because he’s white.]
Truth be told, Em was very close, there were talks of him maybe doing a deal with Duck Down. So it’s like imagine he had gone that route. He would have dropped some crazy dope stuff, but the lane that he got in. You could say the same thing about 50, getting in that camp with Interscope and Aftermath, that lane with Dr. Dre, man it was a blessing and then what he did with it. He did [the] right records like “Stan.” He just didn’t get in that lane and eat off that plate he brought stuff to it so he did it the right way. Like no one else ever did it.
I have a different take on that because I was on the same label as Em. My first two albums were on Interscope. I kinda felt to a degree we did co-exist there for a while. Granted, I never achieved success on the level that he had but I can honestly say that inside that building I felt like I was given every opportunity to succeed and like when “Ugly” came out that was an undeniable moment in hip-hop history it did just happen to fall in between Eminem albums. It was definitely during what could be called his reign I guess. And Haystak was doing his thing during that period and then Paul [Wall] came a little later. I see cats out here eating and succeeding just because me or whoever else don’t achieve success on the level that Em had I can’t really complain. I just gotta get it up. He’s an icon and he was the first. I don’t just reference him as a white rapper, I reference [him] as an all-time great period.
People have said that about Em. Google it. why not? I think Eminem is dope. Dude don’t have to prove nothing to nobody he’s done did it. He rhymes neck and neck with right next to the greats. Listen to “Renegade,” homie held his own and people say he killed Jay on that track.
He can definitely be No. 1. It depends on the longevity of his career. here’s the thing, did Eminem have a greater impact than Rakim for his era? Did Em have a greater impact than Biggie for his era? Did he change the way people rhyme, did the music and constructed their beats? To me to be the greatest of all time doesn’t just mean to have an incredible flow cause if that was the case Pharoahe Monch would be the greatest MC of all time. Andre 3000 would be… it’s not just about lyrics, content and flow. It’s about your impact on popular culture and how records are made. I think he’s in the top 10 for sure because he impacted how people perceived music.
I think I’m pretty good, I’ve had a hell of a career and I’m gonna continue to grow and I hope to be the best that I could be. But there’s so many artists that’s out here that I just feel like I could be the best of all-time. I could be one of the best but that’s a helluva tag to have. I think he’s one of the best to touch the mic. And whoever the best is I don’t feel like whether they’re Black, White, Hispanic that’s not gonna be the reason they the best. That’s just gonna be the pick of the draw. They could be from any country, they could be from any city, they could have any style, they could look any kinda way, they could be fat or skinny, they could be short, they could have a grill in they mouth, they could be any race.
RA the Rugged Man
It’s racist having Eminem as the greatest rapper of all time. That’s like the Last Samurai with Tom Cruise. All the Asians die and Tom Cruise survives walking through the body pile at the end. That’s racist. As good as a MC Eminem is, putting [him] #1 of all time is not even a legitimate argument. I don’t wanna hate on the kid. He’s good at what he does but he’ll tell you that himself. It’s racist. So the whole history of rap goes into who sold the most records or something? It’s a corporate thing. Maybe it’s not racist and just corporate. Corporate America did make him the most successful of all time, or one of them. There’s some sort of race thing behind that. Everybody goes back to the same argument was Elvis the king of rock, obviously there’s race attached to why you would name Eminem the greatest rapper of all time when Eminem will tell you can’t handle to Kool G Rap historically. A man that was great from 1986 to 2009. That’s corporate. Maybe not as much racist, but it’s corporate and it’s industry. I watched Yo MTV raps in 94-95 and they had top rap entertainers or something like that and they had Puffy at No. 1 because he was hot at the moment. It’s corporations brainwashing the people and not giving a fuck about reality. I don’t wanna be one of these White boy rappers that goes and disses Em. Like Em ain’t shit cause I’m not that. I know a lot of White boy wanna be like, “oh, I’m the white boy. I don’t give a fuck about White or Black, I’m the least racist fuck on the planet.” If you’re White and you’re best of all time or you’re Black and you’re the best of all time, I want you to get the title. So I’m not going there….