By: John Esposito
“… Fareal man, if it was not for you guys man, I would not be standing up here right fucking now. ”—Eminem
Those were the last words spoken by Eminem as he exited the stage after Monday night’s Red Bull EmSee: The Road to 8 Mile surprise NYC performance. Curated by Eminem himself, the first battle of Red Bull EmSee: The Road to 8 Mile, is a series of traveling freestyle competitions that’s touring in six US cities. The final battle will be held in St. Andrews Hall in Detroit.
Hosted by Angela Yee (Shade45) and master of ceremonies D.R.E.S ThaBEATnik, the battle, held at the Bowery Ballroom, was judged by Alchemist, Just Blaze, and Craig G., and featured some of New York’s top contenders in the field. Each competitor had a bit of notoriety from one place or another; whether it was from the streets or YouTube. The crowned favorite D.N.A defeated Quest MCody to take home the top prize; a trip to the finals on 8 Mile Road.
Guest performers Slaughterhouse (Joe Budden, Joel Ortiz, Royce Da 5’9″ and Crooked I) hit the stage after the competition. Something became amiss to a few in the crowd when Alchemist made his way into the booth. Laptop in hand covered in “Recovery” stickers, headphones around his neck. At first only a few knew or at least hoped that this could only mean one thing; Em is gonna take the stage. Sure enough, DJ Alchemist began plugging in, the chant began…”SHADY… SHADY… SHADY.” Alchemist gave the technical thumbs up. The records go. Out bursts Mr. Porter (D-12). The crowd is consumed with disappointment for all of three seconds. With incredible stage presence, Em quickly runs out and goes right into his fast paced “despicable freestyle” (a track on the “Over” beat). He owns the crowd as he runs through “On Fire” and “Wont Back Down,” and leaves the crowd with a sincere note of gratitude.
Photo By: David Lang/RED BULL
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