The 2013 track “Don’t Call Me” marked the first time DMX and Rakim would be featured on the same song, but they hadn’t had their first official meeting until after the song was released. In footage recently released by Street Heat Films, the New York-bred rappers got together for the first time, where the former Ruff Ryder declared that he was “The God MC’s” biggest fan.
“Growing up, there was always a conflict on who was the best rapper, it was between Big Daddy Kane and Rakim,” DMX explained. “I always went with Rakim, always. Brother was serious, he didn’t compromise his lyrics, went hard, and didn’t even curse. That’s the shit that was like ‘Wow, this n***a spittin some gangsta s**t and didn’t even curse!’”
After X spit the lyrics to the classic Follow The Leader track “Microphone Fiend,” Rakim returned the praise, noting that DMX brought New York back onto the map in the late ‘90s. Complimenting his affinity for rawness and his still-unmatched energy, Rakim credited the Yonkers rapper for being able to say the things he couldn’t.
“We all know what was going on with hip-hop at that time. When he came through, the s**t was so f***in’ raw, I was like ‘Thank you man, finally.’ It was like New York can stand up again. And what was dope was, I love MCs that say the s**t that I can’t say. And D, he spoke his s**t from day one. You could tell he was walking the s**t he was talking. And that’s why I love him. The energy that this dude puts out, I wish I could have a little bottle of that s**t.”
Watch DMX and Rakim meet for the first time in the video below: