Days after Eminem and Shady Records announced the addition of Yelawolf to its expanding roster, VIBE pulled the Alabama emcee away from the booth to recount his career-changing power move
On how he got signed:
"Keeping quiet was the hardest shit in the world, honestly. I was just so excited for a while. And everyone from my team who did know was really responsible about not letting it out. But I met with Eminem about four to five months ago in Detroit. Paul and Em flew me and my manager out to just kick it and get acquainted. From that meeting, I had no idea it would turn into this situation. I remember Paul was asking me about the meth problem in Alabama and I told him that I wrote 'Pop The Trunk' based off that issue. Next thing I know, Em starts rapping some of my lines from the song. I can’t even describe how that felt, I actually got super nervous. Em’s a real hip-hop fan, he knows about everything that’s going on."
On breaking the news to his mother:
"When I called my mom to tell her—she straight started 'boo hoo' crying, she was just so happy for me. She knows how big Eminem is and she never imagined that I would get to this level. My team actually even surprised me with the news and literally just said ‘the Shady deal is done’ one day. I remember five years ago sitting in my cousin’s car and asking him ‘would Eminem get this, would he sign me?’ We even went through what the meeting would be like and all that. So I can’t say that I never thought about it. Then, a few years later when we were shopping my demo to different labels in New York, I told KP lets take this to Marshall and he just kind of laughed at me. But I always had a feeling he would fuck with it."
On recording with Eminem and his upcoming album:
"We kicked it a couple times but we haven’t laid anything down yet. But I think we’re supposed to go to Detroit next week, so it’s coming. Just wait. I already know the pressure is there but if I let that shit get to me, it’ll affect my music. A lot of rappers have this obsession with staying underground, but I want to take it to the stadium level. We’ve been sitting on records for like four years that we knew were too big for a mixtape. So I’m just focused on writing a great album right now. That’s why I’m calling it Radioactive because I want to personally challenge myself and the industry. It’s a metaphor for my version of radio records. Now, it’s just time to put out a major album and let everyone know why I’m Shady.” —As Told To Mikey Fresh