By Rick Coates
Bad met Evil back in 1997 when two Detroit rappers, Eminem (Marshall
Mathers) and Royce da 5‘9“ (Ryan Montgomery) met at an Usher Concert. The
two hit it off and success seemed certain as they formed the rapping duo
Bad Meets Evil. But success was short lived and for the past 10 years
Royce and Eminem went their separate ways. A lot was said during the
divorce between Bad and Evil that had most in the rap community believing
it would take more than hell freezing over for the two to reunite. But a
reconciliation took place late last year and Bad Meets Evil is back.
One half of the duo will perform this Saturday, July 30 at the Ground Zero
Nightclub within The Streeters Center in Traverse City. While Eminem has
been known to show up on occasion at the shows of his label mates (Shady
Records) and rumor has it he owns a place on Torch Lake, he is not on the
bill for Saturday. In fact he is performing the night before in Montreal,
so the chances are slim to shady he will show up in Traverse City.
Even without Eminem at his side Royce da 5‘9“ is one of the hottest
rappers on the scene right now. His highly anticipated Success Is
Certain CD will be released in two weeks and it expected to explode onto
the charts as did his Bad Meets Evil Hell: The Sequel EP did a month
ago. The hip-hop duos reuniting work went to No. 1 on the Billboard 200
charts selling 171,000 in its first week and making Eminem the first
artist in five years to have two number one albums in the same year.
In addition, Royce is part of the emerging hip hop group Slaughterhouse
that recently signed with Eminems Shady Records. Eminem, along with Dr.
Dre, both plan to be heavily involved in the groups next release.
Ironically it was Dr. Dre that was in the middle of the falling out
between Royce da 5‘9“ and Eminem. Shortly after the two formed the Bad
Meets Evil duo, Royce began ghostwriting for Dr. Dre. However Royces
manager began leaking out the ghostwriting arrangement and Dr. Dre
demanded Royce part ways with his manager, instead the youthful rapper
parted ways with Dre and Eminem.
Tensions with Eminem further escalated when Royce began feuding with the
hip-hop D12 and in particular the member Proof, who was a close friend of
Eminems. The feud played out in lyrics and in the streets with guns and
eventually both Proof and Royce ended up getting arrested. Proof was
eventually gunned down (Royce was in prison on another charge) and killed
in a matter not related to his feud with Royce.
Bad Meets Evil
That was five years ago and for Royce da 5‘9“ (now 34) and Eminem (now 38)
both have gone through a lot of personal and professional growth. For
Eminem, he overcame his battle with drug addiction and writers block that
had plagued him in recent years. As for Royce da 5‘9“, he gave up his
feuding mentality and decided to focus on his creative talent and
Royce reached out to Eminem a few years ago and they started hanging
again and eventually restored their friendship that led to them reforming
their duo. The partnership seems to have energized both. Now the two have
a number one record together and it appears they are just getting started.
In a video statement released to the media last week Eminem had the
following to say:
The best thing about this project and teaming up with someone like Royce
is that he keeps me on my toes and I need that. We have restored our
chemistry from back in the day and taken it to the next level, we seem
more comfortable with each other and we play off each other better now
then we did in the past.
Eminem further commented about their restored relationship and the Bad
Meets Evil Project:
Royce and I started hanging out again and inevitably that led us back
into the studio. At first we were just seeing where it went without any
real goal in mind, but the songs started to come together crazy, so here
Royce da 5‘9“ added on his Twitter page:
Im excited to see this project come to fruition considering the long
lapse in time between when we worked before and now. We had a blast doing
it and we just hope everyone enjoys it while were working on the
Monster that will be the Slaughterhouse album. #TeamShady.
Dont expect Eminem to show Saturday, July 30 at Ground Zero Nightclub,
however do expect an explosive show from Royce da 5‘9“ he is back and has
something to prove and say. Though if Eminem does show dont be surprised.
He apparently knows the way as he was spotted at Ground Zero Nightclub
seven years ago checking out DJ Green Lantern. This show is destined to be
a sell out, and advance tickets are suggested and may be purchased online
at www.groundzeroonline.com or by calling the box office at 231-932-1300.