Though the world of Bad Meets Evil was already a vividly rendered and delightfully macabre place to be, it widened significantly once Royce Da 5'9" revealed his newfound superpower: production. In fact, having picked up a few crucial tips under the guidance of Denaun Porter and DJ Premier, Royce's production talents received a massive debut on Eminem's Music To Be Murdered By album in January, where he produced two tracks in "You Gon' Learn" and lead single "Darkness."
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From there, he went on to produce the entirety of his eighth studio album The Allegory, an introspective and socially conscious project that landed him the first Grammy nomination of his career. And though he has yet to fully dive into a new musical endeavor, we recently caught up with Nickle for our ongoing 12 Days Of Christmas interview series, where he opened up about bringing a new production element to the long-established Bad Meets Evil dynamic.
"I sent Marshall some stuff," he reveals, when asked about a few possible Bad Meets Evil snippets teased a few months back. "I always send him stuff. I mean, so my first placement I got was on his album. So that was a dope accomplishment. And I love when I can send him something and he gets excited, man, it makes me excited. It makes me want to work. Sometimes I need that, you know?" But when it comes to landing beats on Em's studio albums, Royce reveals that it's entirely dependent on his homeboy's creative headspace at the time.
"It's always a new dynamic, because you never know what he's gonna be on," continues Royce. "It all depends on what headspace he’s in, you know? You can do so many things and like, whatever he chooses to do, he's going to be great at it. He's going to strive to put his best foot forward. The competition level of just what you have to put into it in order to be able to coexist from a competitive perspective is distressing. I mean, that's pretty much what my experience is like whenever I'm working with him. I'm a new producer, so having to-- producing his first single is stressful, because, like, it's on the same album as a Dr. Dre beat."
"So it's just a level of stress that's fun," he admits, revealing a glimpse into his own creative process. "And I'm up for that challenge. But it's definitely on a different mind frame. And then like, with those beasts that I gave him for that album, that was my first time working with somebody where when I come around, I have to find out where I fit, and occupy that space, and not go past that. You know? Because that's his ship. I'm just here to help. So I'm just here to do my part. Actually, I didn't even get summoned here to help. I'm just here as a friend. And I'm playing him stuff, and he's liking it. So like, now I got to just adapt to that."
For much more from the legendary lyricist, be sure to check out our full interview with Royce Da 5'9" right here.