Eminem on “Behind The Boards”

Courtesy of the king of the blogs, Eskay, and Youheardthatnew.com, I bring you Cipha Sounds full interview with Eminem on his new Shade45 radio program, “Behind The Boards.”

Nice to hear him talk about working with Dre, his recording technique, how Em would only do one take for a whole song. How he didn’t know how to punch in. Recording to tape. Ah yes, the good old days of the music business, before Pro Tools and the internet put a nail in its coffin.

You gotta fast forward about an hour and fifteen minutes in before Cipha starts talking to him about his own production. Couple excerpts….

On producing Nas’ “Carry The Cross”:

I believe I sent him a beat CD. And he picked that beat and then we only had 1 day. I remember there being 1 day to like add music to it, basically produce it…. He was real close to his release date. If I could go back, I know I would have probably wanted to put more music in the track, but time was limited. I just sent him pretty much whatever I had at the time. That’s usually what I do for anybody I produce a record for.”

On producing 50 Cent’s “Patiently Waiting”:

I had sent 50 just the basic [beat]…. I don’t think Fif understood exactly how I produced the beats. And this was from just watching Dre. Dre would have the jist of the beat and then he would add most of the shit after somebody laid the verse. And that’s kind of how I worked. I was trying to explain to him it was a skeleton beat.

On producing “Runnin” (Dying To Live) for Biggie and Pac:

I got the acapellas. We used an Edgar Winter sample. I wanted that song to have an impact… just the music alone. For rap music, for music to claim a life, or lives, that’s when it gets ridiculous to me. And I wanted to make the power of that song like it was a beef they had that should not have been taken that far. I believe the tempos were a little different so we had to match each line with the tempo. Me being such a fan of both of them, I kind of knew where the down beat was.

On producing Jay-Z’s “Moment of Clarity”:

I actually met with him in New York and I played him basically what I had, what I had been working on. He picked that one. We ended up going back to Detroit, he sent it to me. I wasn’t there while he recorded it but he sent it to me pretty much that same week. I don’t know if I was really feeling that beat until he put words to it. Then all of a sudden it became this… Jay-Z has that ability to take things that, you don’t think the beat is good if you just hear the beat. But once he puts words to it it becomes this whole other… It made me feel exactly what he was saying. There was a couple lines that I even went in the booth and did ad libs on because I felt like the lines were so powerful.

My loyal readers know I made a point in the past of saying Em should go back to working with other producers. I firmly stand by that statement, although I do appreciate what he does. He’s at least creative and tries to be musical, whether he’s actually playing the instruments or not.

I like how he says, “I always do the basic [beat]. My mindframe [is] like this, why put so much into a beat if nobody’s gonna pick it? Why sit there and work on it for 2 hours if nobody’s gonna pick it?”

Exactly!

Bonus: peep his manager Paul Rosenberg’s blog, as well as what Shady Records A&R Dart Parker does when he’s not looking for beats for damn near everyone on the label.

  • BK Cyph

    yeah i totally agree with u Gooch- im not a big fan of Em’s production, or his songs for the most part- BUT i apperciate the care, thought and heart that he puts into his music.

  • che

    i think with the exception of some songs, what is appealing to artists about eminems productions is that there’s a lot of space to breathe in the tracks, there’s not too much going on so the artist can pace himself to create maximum impact for what they’re saying, like carry the cross and moment of clarity are quite deep. but the music is still significant.

    i think one of my favourite eminem productions was jamaican girl by obie.

  • http://www.hip-hopkings.com Stu

    Eminem is a dope producer. But he does sound similar to Dre.

  • G.S.D.

    If I had to pick an adjective to describe Em’s beats it would be plodding.

    At least I now know that Em doesn’t like a lot of his beats either! Everyone gives Dre the credit for teaching him how to make beats, but didn’t his old producers make more of an impact? Jeff Bass or whomever that was that produced a lot of Em’s first joints and then got co-producer credits on some of the later ones that Em got credit for? Seems to me that the style is more along that line than Dre’s.

  • blacker cracker

    he’s made some tight beats and some not as good.
    i’d like to hear dude RAP over a beat

  • bomb

    eminem’s beats suck.

    “Why sit there and work on it for 2 hours if nobody’s gonna pick it?”

    i guess that’s why. working for 2 hours that must be exhausting. that’s like saying why try when i might fail.

  • PETER TOSH

    ANYONE REMEMBER WHEN EMINEM DESTROYED 2PACS SONGS ON “LOYAL TO THE GAME”?? THAT WAS TRULY EMBARASSING, THAT PROJECT REALLY NEEDS TO BE REMIXED. EMINEM IS A TOTALLY OVERRATED PRODUCER

  • GETTEM EM

    MAN EM HAS MADE MORE GOOD DEEPS THAN BAD ONES. THE ONE HE DID FOR 50 WAS UNBELIEVABLE.
    GIVE THIS GUY HIS DUE. ALL I CAN SAY IS “STAN”
    THAT BEAT WAS SICK AND THE CREATIVITY OF THE SONG. THAT WAS ONE OF THE BEST WRITTEN SONGS EVER. GO BACK AND LISTEN TO IT.

    • me

      ‘Stan’ was produces by 45 King

  • KID PANAMA

    EM IS GANGSTA WIT BEATS SOMETIMES. BUT NO MATTER WHAT, HE KILLIN NIGGAS

  • Flymasta

    I JUST CANT WAIT 4 HIM TO PUT OUT SOME HITS

    BUT ON THE RECORDS THE BEATS MAYBE SIMPLE BUT THEY ARE GOOD NO DOUBT THAT’S WHY PPL LIKE THESE BEATS.

    PLUS IT’S THE RAPPERS JOB TO BRING THE BEAT 2 LIFE SO WHEN THEY SPIT IT’S REAL GOOD

    EX. LUPE FIASCO WHO’S ALBUM IS FIRE WHATEVER BEAT U GIVE HIM HIS JOB IS TO BRING IT 2 LIFE

  • http://www.xxlmag.com/?p=18100 Jay

    “Why sit there and work on it for 2 hours if nobody’s gonna pick it?”
    ^^^^^^^^^^^^^
    thats exactly what we dont need.. fuck u makin beats for then? if ur not gonna put all ur energy n time into a beat dont fuckin make em.. ur a talented as fuck rapper and u help other artists make bangers.. stick to that and producing..look at the pl that make beats they put time and energy and are successful .. ems givin half ass beat trys dont help anyone if u dont wanna make the beat 2 the fullest why even start on the beat..stick 2 what ur good at or stick to what you will actually give ur all on

  • Gooch

    I think the point he was trying to make regarding working on the beats for 2 hours was this: When he is set to work with someone, it’s a very planned and coordinated thing. The artist and him have an understanding that he will be produce a song for the artist’s album in question. Em knows this. So he provides skeleton tracks just to give the artist an idea of where he wants to go with the song he will produce for them. Still, he’s giving them a selection of skeletons to pick from. Maybe 10 tracks. It’s not worth working on skeleton tracks for 2 hours and producing the whole beat because he’s not sure which one the artist will pick. Rather save it for later.

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  • yurdumb

    someone tell that fool GETTEM EM that 45 KING tracked “STAN” Not EM yes it is one of the greatest songs ever written but he didn’t produce that shit, his beats are hit or miss with me. like “Renegade” that shit was sick, but then you have shit like “got some teeth”, or damn near the entire “eminem show” lp. I think he can improve but yeah if he to the time to master the craft like he did with rhymin’ he should be very good.

  • niggafrommemphis

    Just becuz I don’t listen or like certain people’s shit doesn’t mean I gotta say some ignorant shit,like we can do sometimes.I’ve never been a fan,small or big,of eminem and I never understood what people within my own family and hood saw in him sayin,”NAY,NAY NAY NAY NAY and talkin reckless about your love ones and shit.Notice,people espcially black folks ain’t talkin about the dude.But I saw that Spice!1 was a little hurt that em took his voice off One day at a time and rapped over it instead.If that ain’t the straw that breaks the camel back,what is?How you not gonna give Spice the due he deserves?That’s fucked up,real fucked up!

    • Hanch

      Yo Your mad fucking stupid for that comment. So your saying Black Folks dont like em thats about the most fucking retarded thing i have ever heard. Maybe One Day we will be known as the HUMAN RACE!!!! And Not Categorize People But that takes work from Both Sides I feel White PPl are doing there part to kill Racism for what there ANCESTORS did to us in the PAST but WE HAVE TO MEET THEM HALF WAY!!!! Em Is the The Best Alive Rapper Alive by far. His story telling skills is off the Chart his Flow is sick and well fuck it he makes plain good MUSIC!!!! Get over your Reverse Racist Ass and quit Hating because EM is WHITE!!! Fucking Clown

  • mr.martin

    all those beats were thrash

  • Architect

    Em makes ok beats. The best beat he’s made is the one for redman, I think its an unreleased track. He used dead rappers voice samples (pun, big, among others)and red killed it of course. I think its called “I see dead people” – look for it.

  • Jack

    how can all you people hate on eminem i put him in the number 2 slot of greatest rappers of all time right after Jay-Z and now he’s venturing out and doing producing and everyones got nothing but negative things to say just like when he started rapping but notice the majority of songs he produces are hits. and that the top artists all seek his production.

  • Jason Murk

    Can anyone think of a beat from Dre and / or Eminem that they actually LIKED from the past 3 years?

    Dre and Em make beats that would have been hot 10 years ago… but today… not so much.

    • Hanch

      Well Considering Em pretty much has been retired for the last three years thats a pretty dumb fucking comment asshole. Whats wrong with you fucking clowns. And Dre hasnt been putting much out either all there shit is gonna be on Detox and Relapse but i do believe most of the songs mentioned were within the last 3 years or close to it.

  • mike

    Eminem is lyrical, beat wise he hasn’t done anything so crazy that it really stands out. Besides that joint with Tupac, and Biggie, which was a song that was already out, and Curtis’s “in the club”, he not poppin like that. And let me add, he is lyrical, but most of what he rhyme about has no real substance from a black man’s point of view.

    • Hanch

      Maybe Cause Em isnt Black? Whats wrong with you dumbasses. Not real substance so STAN had no real substance. I AM no substance or the song from 8 Mile no substance the song form 8 Mile is basically the best fucking Short Narrative Book Ever Made Yall are some Reverse Racist Mofos

  • Vicious Seiger

    Em is decent but far from legendary when it comes to beats. He comes with the heat too far and between. I wouldn’t even name him in the top 25 producers of all time. Still though when he’s on his game he’s on his game (ex. Obie Trice – Average Man).

  • mimi

    Eminem is the greatest lyrical rapper alive.. I dont care wtf yall say.. U know its true.. And as for production… He is getting there.. He has amazing beats and yall haters better quit hatin!!

  • c_mac

    you’d think the dudes at scratch realize dude is trash behind the boards but any interview with em will move mags.

  • Ali

    i think he’s tha most underrated producer in tha game…..his loyal to tha game beats really impressed me…..thats my 2nd fave pac album even past tha ones where he was alive…..all eyez on me obviously #1 but anyway I really like Em’s stuff 4 some reason not alot of others do……….as for hating on Dr. Dre, no, u cant do that lol…i’ll let Em slide but Dre? cmon nobody’s even close

  • romil

    patiently waiting, REnegade, Carry the Cross, and plus some of the trax he did for himself like Loose yourself are Considered Classics, so I would nominiate him to the TOP 25 LISt

  • 80P

    man yall are talkin bout his beats suck N shyt, and jus who do yall got in mind that makes GOOD beats? cuz lil jon sure as hell dont, all his shyt sounds the same, it has no melody, no nuthin, and uses the same 3 keys on the piano or keyboard or wutever. Em is my favorite producer, i always look forward to hearin tracks on artists albums that were produced by Em. As far as rappin goes.. yeah eminem holds tha muthafuckin torch hands down

  • Jameson

    Eminem is tight as fuck he should be in every ones top ten of all time. Every producer puts hours on in of there time to make that one hit.

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