DJ Khalil Talks Producing For Eminem's 'Recovery': 'It Was The Most Surreal Experience'

The road to recovery is no easy process for an addict. But for Eminem, the path to sobriety has helped him defeat the mediocracy that plagued his last several studio releases with his aptly titled new album, Recovery.

One of the driving forces behind Marshall’s newfound musical coherence has come from DJ Khalil and The New Royales. The four-piece ensemble is credited with producing three records off Em’s seventh solo studio release.

“I remember just being in the studio playing beats for Dr. Dre and Em, and it was the most surreal experience of my life,” DJ Khalil tells VIBE. “They were both feeling everything I was playing—I couldn’t believe it.”

Khalil originally caught the attention of Eminem when one of his beat CDs landed in the rapper’s hands. “I sent Em a batch of beats. He was a big fan of the Slaughterhouse record I produced called “The One”—initially it was for him. It was one his favorite records from that album,” says DJ Khalil.

After one their most talked-about collaborations—the Pink-featured "Won’t Back Down”—hit the Internet, the track silenced critics snickering about whether the album’s questionable guest appearances would live up to the hype.

“Pink took it to a whole other level. We recorded her out in Malibu and even before she stepped into the booth, she was buggin’ out off the energy of the track,” Khalil tells VIBE. "And we knew people were going to question it, but after you hear it. It ends all talk.”

The record’s co-producer, Rahki, says the record originally wasn't made with Slim Shady in mind.

“We weren’t even thinking about making 'Wont Back Down' specifically for Eminem. That’s how we work though—we don’t go in the studio thinking of a specific artist,” Rahki recalls. “Khalil actually left the room because he got a call from Dr. Dre and when he came back the record was done.”

On one of Recovery’s most introspective cuts, “Talkin to Myself,” Eminem reveals that he was once close to spitting some venom directed toward some of rap’s current giants including Kanye West and Lil Wayne. Khalil and The Royales’ say they crafted the record’s perfect combination of rock-influenced guitar strings and snares over three years ago.

“We came up with the hook and everything. That record was basically just fill in the blanks. I mean it came together literally in three minutes. With us writing the hook and Kobe laying the vocals—the whole record took about an hour to make,” said DJ Khalil.

Recovery hit stores and iTunes today. —Mikey Fresh



From the Web

More on Vibe

Getty Images

Nipsey Hussle Involved In L.A. Brawl After Being Mistaken For O.T. Genasis

Nipsey Hussle had a pretty eventful weekend. The rapper was reportedly involved in a brawl outside of a nightclub in West Hollywood on Sunday (Dec. 9). The only problem is, Nipsey wasn't the target; O.T. Genasis was.

The Victory Lap artist was reportedly outside of his girlfriend Lauren London's birthday bash at Nightingale's when the incident occurred. According to TMZ, several men approached Nipsey and his crew in the parking lot. A couple of them reportedly swung on the rapper before security was called to break up the situation.

While the brawl seemed random, but it apparently stemmed from an earlier interaction with O.T. Genasis. Earlier that night, the "Everybody Mad" rapper was reportedly spotted punching a man outside of the nightclub before chopping it up with Nipsey Hussle. TMZ reports that the unidentified man and friends were looking to even the score with O.T. Genasis and got mixed up because both him and Nipsey were wearing plaid shirts on the night of the incident. While it has not been confirmed, the situation looks like a typical case of mistaken identity.

Despite the drama, Nipsey seemed pretty unbothered when TMZ caught up with him outside of LAX. "That's life. We don't give that s**t no attention," Nipsey said about the altercation. "We workin' on music at this point. Do I got any bruises, any scratches? We workin' bro."

Continue Reading
Getty Images

Ciara Requests Mediation With Future Over Son's Travel Schedule

Ciara has had enough of the back and forth with her ex Future over their son's travel schedule. Now, she's requesting help from the family court. The singer is reportedly asking the judge to force Future into mediation with her so they can hash out a travel schedule for their four-year-old, Future Jr.

According to court documents obtained by TMZ, Future has been a flake when it comes to keeping up with his visits with his son. He's allegedly missed scheduled visits and has frequently left baby Future with his mother or grandmother without spending time with him. The "Level Up" artist also noted that the constant traveling has been taxing on her son. So, she wants to figure out a schedule for his own wellbeing.

Ciara's legal team alleges that they attempted to straighten out a schedule without help from a judge, but were unsuccessful. If a judge will not grant a mandatory mediation, Ciara is requesting to settle the matter in a trial hearing.

Ciara and Future have had a very tumultuous relationship throughout the years. The former couple have been in and out of the courts regarding custody and child support. Hopefully, they will reach some middle ground in the new year.

Continue Reading

Vic Mensa Apologized To XXXTentacion's Mother Over BET Freestyle Diss

Vic Mensa sparked controversy earlier this year after he took jabs at XXXTentacion's abusive past during a freestyle at the 2018 BET Hip-Hop Awards. Many criticized the timing of his diss, saying he shouldn't have said it while X's mother was in attendance to accept her son's award. While Vic stated that he doesn't regret his comments, he admitted that he did apologize to X's mom.

"I actually reached out to his mother personally,” the rapper said during an appearance on radio's "The Breakfast Club" on Monday (Dec. 10). "I apologized to her because I didn’t know she would be in attendance… I wouldn’t walk back any of my statements because what I said, I meant. And some more truth came to light not long after."

He also mentioned that although his timing was inappropriate, his talking points were important and necessary. "At the end of the day, I do think that the conversation that I was trying to bring up and that I did bring up is a super necessary conversation," he continued. "Maybe the way of going about it was not the best for the time, but I think the conversation is one that had to be had – talking about violence against women and misogyny in hip-hop, but particularly violence against women. I had a lot of people on the low reach out to me and thank me for that."

As previously mentioned, XXXTentacion was accused of physically abusing his then-pregnant, ex-girlfriend. Vic's freestyle included the lines: "Only time you bear arms is in a wife beater, loser/Your favorite rapper is an abuser." Weeks after the viral diss, audio obtained by Pitchfork, revealed the rapper admitting to committing physical harm against her and others.

Check out Vic Mensa full interview above.

Continue Reading

Top Stories