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Eminem Opens Up About Working With Kendrick Lamar, ‘Headlights’ in Zane Lowe Interview (Part 3)

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One of the major talking points leading up to the release of Eminem‘s ‘The Marshall Mathers LP 2′ was Kendrick Lamar‘s guest spot on ‘Love Game.’ It was another display of technical mastery and wit by the two respected MCs, but people were caught off-guard by how it’s more of a tongue-in-cheek concept track. Em talks about why he took that route with Lamar and slightly touched on putting together the apologetic ‘Headlights’ in Part 3 of his interview with BBC Radio 1’s Zane Lowe.

Slim Shady says he was deep in the process of editing ‘The Marshall Mathers LP 2′ when he noticed a glaring problem: “I kinda sat back and was like, ‘F— man, I got no rappers on this s—.'”

So he hit up Lamar, which made sense to him because they are both signed to the Interscope/Aftermath label. Eminem invited the Compton rapper to his recording studio in Detroit where he explained the direction of the album and ‘Love Game,’ which he purposefully made conceptual because people wouldn’t be expecting it.

The veteran rhymer ran into another minor snag in the recording process: Lamar wasn’t rapping. “He laid like two different hooks I think,” Eminem says. “I’m not sure to this day if he knew that I just wanted him to rap on it, because he laid like two hooks and he looked at me like, ‘Is that it?’ The only rapper on the album won’t rap.” Of course, he did lay a verse thanks to Eminem’s nudging and ‘Love Game’ was born.

‘Headlights’ comes right after ‘Love Game’ on the album. The track is the most emotional song featured — Em apologizes to his mother despite the strained relationship he’s so often angrily rapped about. He announced in his Q&A session with Sway earlier this month that he will no longer answer personal questions in interviews, but still, Zane Lowe lightly pressed for more tidbits about the track.

“It was one of those things that’s bothered me for a little bit. It was one of those things that I needed to get off my chest,” the MC admits. “So I don’t really have anything to elaborate or expand on that record other than everything that I needed to say, I put on that record.”

The final part of the Zane Lowe/Eminem interview will arrive later today (Nov. 21).

Next: 25 Best Underrated Eminem Guest Verses

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