Royce Da 5’9 and Eminem have been working together since the late 1990s, but it was his manager who introduced the two.
In a recent interview with XXL, in support of his upcoming Layers album, the Detroit rapper recalled the first time he met Em… thanks to his manager Kino.
“Kino was like, ‘Let me introduce you. This is Eminem’,” Royce explained. “So I was like, ‘Waddup, man? How you doing? I like your sh*t.’ And he was like, ‘Dog. Did you just say, “I’m iller than standing in front of a gorilla holding a banana?”‘ [Laughs] That’s a line that I said when I was on stage, I said it a cappella. I was on my Canibus sh*t back then [laughs]. So I was like ‘Yeah’ and he was like, ‘Yo, man, that’s f*cking ill.'”
From there, the two formed a bond, which would evolve into recording together… beginning with the 1999 classic, “Bad Meets Evil”.
“We ended up getting on the phone, having some conversations and that led to getting in the studio in Detroit and recording this song called ‘Bad Meets Evil’,” Royce recalled. “When he eventually signed his deal with Dre, he reached back out to me because he wanted to put that song on his first album. So when I flew out to L.A. to re-record the vocals, that’s when we got like super tight.”