With a career in Hip-Hop dating back to the late ’80s, legendary producer DJ Premier has a wealth of stories involving many of the culture’s biggest names, some of which he shared during his appearance on Hot 97’s Ebro in the Morning on Monday (July 18). At one point during the conversation, Premo revealed that fellow production icon Dr. Dre once blocked him from working with rap star 50 Cent during the early aughts, just prior to Fif signing his historic record deal with Shady/Aftermath. According to the Gang Starr member, the record also involved Fat Joe, whom Fif would later go to battle with before reconciling their differences in recent years.
“[Fat Joe] signed me to Terror Squad, and we were supposed to do a project like a compilation album the way Khaled does his, and the first single I was going to drop was a 50 Cent record,” Premier explained. “This was when everybody wasn’t really messing with 50 to the fullest because he was having too much drama after doing ‘How To Rob,’ and me and Fif hit it off right away and clicked when I got on the phone with him.”
However, that particular record would never come to be, as Fif’s involvement would be shut down by Dr. Dre himself, who preferred that Fif take a break from collaborations until the completion of what would ultimately become Fif’s mult-platinum debut Get Rich or Die Tryin.’
“He said he would do the record, and right when it’s about time to do the record, we get a call that Fif can’t do it. I’m like, ‘Why not?’ and they like he’s about to sign to Eminem and Dr. Dre, and I’m like, ‘Noooo,’ because we already committed to us and I talked to Dre and Dre was like ‘Preem, I love you, but he’s not doing any more recording until he does his debut album.’” Years later, DJ Premier would get his opportunity to work with Fif, as the two collaborated on the 2011 release, “Shut Ur Bloodclot Mouth.”
A more timely development that was discussed during Premo’s time with Ebro and company was the veteran boardsman’s time in the studio with Kendrick Lamar, who has a stash of several of his tracks, which have yet to be released. “Kendrick had come to see me, we had sat together to work on some stuff,” Premier said of the Mr. Morale & the Big Steppers creator. “It didn’t materialize, but just the fact that he even showed up and came in the room.” He continued, adding, “We had a great time, just hanging. I made like, ten joints for him, and he took them all. Even when I’m like, ‘Which one you want me to give?’ He’s like, ‘All of ’em in order from the way you played ’em.”
Last Friday (July 15), DJ Premier released his new album, Hip Hop 50 Volume 1, which includes appearances from Nas, Lil Wayne, Joey Bada$$, Run The Jewels, Slick Rick, Remy Ma, and Rapsody.