Marshall Mathers was apparently suspicious of the hip-hop star when he first broke through
Eminem made Kendrick Lamar prove he didn’t have a ghostwriter, according to Ed Sheeran.
The singer-songwriter, who returned with two new songs yesterday (January 6), told the story during an interview. It was originally told to him by producer Rick Rubin.
During his appearance on the Zach Sang Show, Sheeran said Eminem was suspicious of Lamar originally, thinking he had someone else writing his lines. “Eminem heard that Kendrick Lamar was the best rapper and he invited him to the studio to get him on a song,” Sheeran said.
He continued: “He arrived and Kendrick came with all his mates and Eminem said, ‘I just want you in the studio, just you on your own and then my engineer is gonna come in and then record you doing it, but your mates aren’t allowed in.’
According to the story, Lamar agreed and wrote what Sheeran described as a “sick verse”. “Everyone came in to listen to it and Eminem said that he did it to test Kendrick because he thought he had a ghostwriter,” he said of what happened next.
Apparently Marshall Mathers III was impressed by the then-rising star’s work, and claimed he was “the best”. Listen to the interview below, via Okayplayer.
Sheeran announced his new album ÷ yesterday, along with the premieres of tracks ‘Castle On The Hill’ and ‘Shape Of You’.
He co-wrote ‘Castle On The Hill’ with pop producer Benny Blanco, with whom he also wrote 2014’s ‘Don’t’. ‘Shape Of You’ was co-written by Sheeran with Snow Patrol‘s Johnny McDaid and pop producer Steve Mac.
Speaking on the BBC Radio 1 Breakfast Show, Sheeran explained that the lyrics to ‘Shape Of You’, which include a reference to Van Morrison, meant that he and Blanco never actually sent the song to Rihanna.
He recalled: “I started writing lyrics like ‘putting Van the Man on the juke box’ and thought ‘she’s not really going to sing that’. We decided halfway through that this would work for me.”