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Rick Rubin Reflects On Being White In The Early Days Of Hip-Hop


When Rick Rubin first came on the scene, things were a lot different in hip-hop especially in terms of racial barriers. As Rick assisted in taking the genre to new levels alongside Russell Simmons and other hip-hop heavy weights, the renowned producer recently spoke on his earlier days telling that at first his skin color caught many by surprise.

“Both LL and Russell [Simmons] couldn’t believe that I was White when I met them,”said Rubin in an interview with Shade 45. Later adding, “I told [Simmons] I’d made this record. He couldn’t believe it. He was like, ‘You made that? That’s the Blackest record I’ve ever heard in my life. This was at a time when there was nobody White, at that time, in this world. It was interesting.”

In the 80’s, Rubin helped piece together Def Jam Recordings with Russell Simmons, cultivating acts like Run-D.M.C., LL Cool J, and the Beastie Boys. After a long period, Rubin returned to the scene this year working on albums for Kanye West, Jay Z and Eminem.

Listen to the full interview below:

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