On Saturday (August 12), the pioneering MC — who earlier this week, dropped a diss track aimed at Em — took to social media where he issued words of remorse for the track he admitted “fell short.”
“In light of the 50th anniversary of Hip-Hop, my original intention was to contribute an engaging and enjoyable endeavor to enrich the cultural landscape,” the statement reads. “Regrettably, my response fell short in its execution, and I accept full responsibility for the misjudgment. I acknowledge that my perspective was ill-conceived and I am prepared to take ownership of this oversight. It has become evident that Eminem’s dedicated and passionate fan base stands unwaveringly by his side, which is a testament to their genuine admiration and loyalty—a truly commendable aspect.”
The conflict began following an appearance on The Art of Dialogue earlier this year when Melle Mel suggested that if Eminem wasn’t white, he wouldn’t be considered one of the top five rappers alive — according to Billboard‘s 50 Greatest Rappers Of All Time list on which Eminem was ranked at #5 and Melle Mel came in at #48.
“From the onset, I have consistently recognized Eminem’s exceptional prowess as an emcee, without reservation,” he continued. “My unfortunate choice of words, suggesting that his success is solely attributed to the color of his skin was in no way reflective of my genuine beliefs. It was an attempt, albeit misguided, to engage competitively within the emcee sphere.
“It is important to acknowledge that the dynamics of Hip-Hop have evolved over distinct eras, and it is inevitable that not everyone will resonate with my perspective, just as I may not fully comprehend others. Throughout my involvement in shaping the Hip-Hop landscape, the cornerstone has been built upon a foundation of mutual respect, even when personal preferences may differ.”
“Obviously he’s a capable rapper,” Mel previously told The Art of Dialogue. “If you was talking about sales, he’s sold more than everybody. If you were talking about rhyme style, okay he got a rhyme style. But he’s white. He’s white!”
“So now if Eminem was another n-gga like all the rest of us, would he be Top 5 on that list when a n-gga that could rhyme just as good as him is 35? That had records and all that? He’s 35. He’s white.”
He continued: “And anybody could be as mad … They could feel how they wanna feel. If you don’t think that race plays a part in the equation of how great he is — I heard one of the dudes that’s down with him, Royce Da 6’9″ [mislabeling Royce Da 5’9″] or one of those – I heard he’s just as good as Eminem. Why he ain’t as big as Eminem? Because he’s Black! Ain’t none of that shit hard to figure out. Eminem gets a top spot because he’s white.”
Meanwhile, Slim Shady didn’t take the slight lying down. Once he got wind of the interview, he addressed the critique in a firestorm of deadly bars on Ez Mil‘s new track, “Realest.”
“Hip Hop has been good to me, huh/ But when they say that I’m only Top 5 ’cause I’m white, why would I be stunned?/ My skin color’s still working against me/ ‘Cause second, I should be, to none/ Bein’ white being why they put me at five (Nope)/ That’s why they can’t put me at one.”
Then, turning his attention to Melle Mel, he spits: “Shoutout to Furious Five and Grandmaster Flash, but boy/ There’s someone who really is furious/ Stay out his path, his wrath avoid/ I’ll be the last to toy with a juice head whose brain is half destroyed, like a meteor hit it/ Now with Melle Mel, he lost his ass to ‘roids.”