Eminem’s new single, “Without Me,” has been released to radio, and on its B-side — which has made its way onto underground mixtapes — Em and guest star Dr. Dre vocalize their disdain for Jermaine Dupri.
“What about Jermaine?” Em asks Dre on the song, titled “What You Say.”
“F— Jermaine, he don’t belong speaking mine or Timbaland’s name,” Dre responds. “And don’t think I don’t read your little interviews and see what you’re saying.”
The latter line refers to the November 2001 issue of XXL magazine, where a boastful Jermaine Dupri spoke of his clout as a producer and favorably compared himself to Dr. Dre and Timbaland.
“That’s my mentality music wise,” Dupri was quoted as saying. “Whether it be Puff [or] anybody that people wanna call my competition, I will take them out. Hands down, ain’t nobody in the industry that can do what I do. Not Dre, not Timbaland, not nobody.”
Dre told MTV News earlier this month that he and Timbo were so heated that they contemplated collaborating on a dis song aimed at JD called “Papa Smurf.”
“Well, it was a few negative things that Jermaine Dupri said about us in the XXL magazine, so we were gonna make a song dedicated to him,” Dre explained. “He said me or Timbaland can’t do what he does. I thought that was kinda crazy. That was cocky. He was just at my studio maybe about two or three weeks before that asking me to do a song with him. So I found that really funny.”
If you listen to Dupri, there is no real beef. The producer said it’s just a friendly competition of who can put out the most hits.
“I feel like it’s all friendly,” Dupri said of his comments. “I’m a fan of everybody’s work from R. Kelly to Timbaland. Dr. Dre, I been listening to him since I was a little boy with
N.W.A. He is the best at what he does, but it’s a friendly competition with me. If the corporate people at Burger King and McDonald’s see each other walking down the street, they’re not gonna shoot each other or nothing stupid like that, but on TV it’s war.”
Which seems just fine with Dre. He said he has no problem with letting his “music do the talking.”
“How does he figure we can’t get with him?” the beat Doc scoffed. “Most of his artists would probably rather work with us anyways.”
On “What You Say,” Dre also refers to JD as a “Mini-Me” who runs around with several smaller versions of himself, and raps, “When I see you I’mma step on you/ And not even know it, you midget …/Over 80 million records sold/ And I ain’t have to do it with 10 or 11-year-olds.”
— Shaheem Reid, with additional reporting by Sway Calloway