Eminem is working with Russell Simmons to help spread the word about what a positive effect hip-hop can have on urban communities politically, socially and economically. Simmons' Hip-Hop Summit Action Network will be sponsoring their latest Hip-Hop Summit on April 26 in Slim Shady's hometown of Detroit.
Taking place in Cobo Arena, Em and Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick will be two of the event's co-hosts. D12, Rev. Run, Redman, Method Man, N.O.R.E., the D.O.C., Doug E. Fresh, Petey Pablo, Slum Village, the Bass Brothers, Cam'ron and the Diplomats, and Keith Murray are among those confirmed to attend.
"For me, Detroit symbolizes hip-hop in a lot of different ways," Eminem said in a statement released Thursday (April 17). "Everybody who's been involved in Detroit hip-hop culture here has spent years trying to bring light to the city the same way Russell worked to bring hip-hop to the attention of the world and the same way the mayor is working to put Detroit back in the spotlight. It's the struggle to be heard and to be recognized. It's our time, both hip-hop's and Detroit's."
"It's a big deal and there's gonna be all these artists performing, there's gonna be 18,000 people and the summit is going to be during the NAACP convention," Simmons explained on Tuesday. "You're not going to believe how dramatic and life-transforming it can be for some of the kids who come. Our commitment is to help empower the youth of today, who are the most gifted and talented generation of young people that we've ever been blessed to have. Assembling in Detroit, amidst its rebirth under a dynamic, young 32-year-old hip-hop mayor, is a great tribute to the power of hip-hop."
Simmons' reps say the theme for this year's summit is "The Remix: Rebuilding ... Refocusing ... Reinvesting ... Resurgence." During the NAACP festivities the next night, Simmons will receive a lifetime achievement award from the organization.
On July 12, Eminem will also be at the center of a major shindig in his hometown. He'll be headlining his only scheduled U.S. concert this year at Ford Field (see "Em's Hometown Concert In July Might Be The Eminem Show"). 50 Cent, D12 and Missy Elliott are also on the bill.