Marley Marl Responds To MC Shan's Beat Jacking Allegations

UPDATE: Marley Marl dismisses MC Shan's claims and deems him irrelevant.

In 1988, the Juice Crew released "The Symphony," which stands as one of the most beloved posse cuts of its era. The song features Big Daddy Kane, Craig G, Kool G Rap and Masta Ace and it was released on Marley Marl's In Control, Volume 1 album. A few years ago, Masta Ace shared his take on why MC Shan did not appear on the song. Shan did not make a comment at the time, but is now responding to what Ace shared, explaining his reasons for not appearing on "The Symphony." In this video interview he uploaded to his own YouTube channel, Shan also alleges that Marley has not paid emcees and that he's taken credit for beats he didn't produce.  

The interview comes as a response to the aforementioned Masta Ace interview, in which Ace shared his take on why MC Shan did not appear on "The Symphony." According to Ace (in the interview from 2008), Marley Marl told him that Shan did not appear on it because he felt he would have been "playing himself" to be on the same song as "new jacks" at the time. In response, Shan claimed this is not true.

"Let me address that. I know this is something old I'm touching on," he shared in the interview. "What y'all gotta understand is I knew Marley Marl and I've done songs with him that I didn't get paid for. So, I can understand Ace for listening to that crap Marley was tellin' him but if y'all know me, I was never one to say nothin' on the side, behind your back. If I felt something about you, I was gonna say it to your face." 

"It wasn't because Shan didn't wanna be on that record that Ace got a spot. Ace got a spot because he held his own," he added. "If he couldn't hold his own, he wouldn't have been on that record. So, Masta Ace, big shout to you for holding your own. But, all that that Marley told y'all was lies." 

Shan then went on to say that he does not regret his decision. 

"Yeah, I regret...I don't even regret not being on 'The Symphony.' If I might have been on it, maybe Masta Ace wouldn't be who he is today. So, I'm happy that I wasn't on it, that Ace got to get his shine." 

In the interview, Shan also says he wasn't the only emcee to not get paid properly after working with Marley. Shan then went on to claim that Marley Marl is not responsible for producing many notable songs for artists such as Kool G Rap, Biz Markie and Big Daddy Kane.

"All of those joints y'all thought Marley Marl produced, let me tell you something. Kane, G Rap, Biz, all of them bring their own beats. They bring their own beats to the studio. Marley threw them in the sampler and put his name on it. My songs were the only ones that Marley sat down and actually had to work for." 

"We want to talk about truth? I'll tell you the truth 'cause I ain't scared to say it. I don't know how many other people won't tell you. Maybe Kane won't tell you, 'I bring my own beats and you put your name on it.' Maybe G Rap and [DJ] Polo won't say it. Maybe Biz won't say it. But, I'm tellin' y'all. He got his name on a whole lotta stuff that he didn't even do."

At the end of his video, Shan shares that he will make another volume of this series. The interview can be seen below:

UPDATE: Marley Marl has responded to MC Shan's claims, stating that this stems from "years of bitterness and drug abuse" and that no one particularly cares about this situation.

"To all the Juice Crew fans and who have loved our legacy for all these years, I’m real sorry that you have to see this go down," said Marley Marl. To the other kids who don’t know who this dude is in the background, this is MC Shan. He used to be one of the top rappers in the ‘80s down with the Juice crew. He made a record called ‘The Bridge’ about a place that he wasn’t even from, and we let him prodigy that.

"It’s like 25 years later with this ‘Symphony’ story, but to be honest, who really gives a fuck? Who cares?" he continued. "It’s like 25 years ago. Masta Ace made that video four years ago. Four years to say something and nobody said nothing, it’s so funny. And as for Cold Chillin’, you know no one was getting paid back in the day. We was making joints."

Addressing the allegations directly, Marley Marl said that he doesn't understand why this would be brought up after so long and that MC Shan is coming from a place of irrelevance.

"As for me not making the records, come on man," he continued. "You saw what happened to all the artists after I wasn’t producing their shit no more? I don’t have to go there. I get to them every day on the radio. My skill levels right there, people see where I’m at so I doubt anybody believes that bullshit. This just comes from years of bitterness, drug abuse… Drug abuse and bitterness don’t mix. This is what happens ladies and gentlemen."

RELATED: Marley Marl Recalls Making "Eric B. Is President" & "My Melody"


  • Ben Devlin

    Little quote from Biz Markie: "Everybody to this day thinks Marley was the mastermind. He could definitely hook up a beat, yes. But he usually had to have somebody tell him what to do with the beat" In my opinion, what Shan says seems legit, but he does kind of come across as an old man disputing the minutia of hip-hop history, when it doesn't really matter. What matters is that "The Symphony" is fucking dope.

  • Anonymous

    its funny how marley marl said shan coming from place of irrelevant. while marley marl has been more successful since then, i find it hard to believe someone would be this huge marley marl fan and not know who mc shan is.

  • DV

    never trust a blackman without a mustache and neither one of those guys have mustaches #justsayin

  • Bville rider

    Hip Hop history(His story) Is of Supreme importance! The truth has to be brought out and respected. Look at this Preem BS Him calling Guru and Solar gay, cause Guru bounced on him cause of drugs gay porn and stealiing, Rhe truth is coming out late but it is coming out and thats whats important for hip hop. all this making up shit to make niggas egos feel better need to stop.

  • Anonymous

    all i know is marley never denied shan's story


    Back in the 80s not to many rappers had samplers or drummachines to make beats, so of course Marley was the guy who took their ideas and worked them out for them. It was give and take, not how you lable it. Motherfuckers were happy to rhyme over that shit - to perform it live, but no arguing about "who ist the producer". Is Dr. Dre a "producer"? What does Hollywookd-"Producer" Harvey Weinstein actually contribute, so filmmakers can make him rich? What is the definition of a "producer"?

    • Doubl Negative

      It's semantics homie, "producer" has a different connotation in the film industry compared to the rap game. Harvey is to Quentin Tarantino what Suge is to Dre; the disparity bein' hip-hop producers are the artists, the movie producer supplies the fundin'.

  • Special Ed

    This is embarrassing... Really, it took you 25 years to get the courage to speak on it??? I think dude is indeed just bitter... On the flipside, why clown the guy?? The bitterness part was enough, leave it there... I'm a quote Drake on this one: 'It bother's me when the gods, get to acting like they broads...'

  • Anonymous

    I know one thing that Marly Marl said that is a FACT: SHAN IS NOT FROM QUEENSBRIDGE!!! He's a friggin' fraud when he says he is. He was a damn visitor. He used to visit his grandfather in Queensbridge, but he didn't live there. And when he was there VISITING, he was not allowed to come outside, and had to sit in that 4th floor window, watching while everything was going on outside.

  • Anonymous

    This reminds me of my drunk ass uncle being at a random place, spotting somebody he knew 20 years ago and babbling on about the time he beat his ass at the bar in 1985

  • NONO




  • Larry -O

    You guys forget Producer K-Def said the same thing about Marley Marl. Everybody thought Marley produced those Lords Of The Underground albums but it was K-Def.

  • bloody bastard

    just because you bring a producer a sample you'd like to rock over as an idea/starting point for a joint doesn't invalidate the producers contribution to turning that loop into a finished production. you know marley put in work, c'mon son gtfohwtbs!

  • Martin

    Kinda odd that Shan decides to set the record straight now. But maybe he just hadn't paid attention. It's too bad these guys can't hash out their differences. Bitterness on both ends of this. If Marly was comfortable in his own skills, he'd have just dismissed it and not taken shots. However, instead of shrug it off, he takes personal shots at Shan. So, it likely has some element of truth. Too bad, I was a Juice Crew Fan.

  • Anonymous

    and we let him prodigy prodigy got dissed

  • Anonymous

    LOL @ dudes in there mid 40-s beefing over some dumb shit from the 80's, Black face version of "Grumpy Old Men"

  • Anonymous


  • Rocman

    First and foremost, I'm a Big Juice Crew fan, but 25 years who would have thought that all of this beef was going on between Marly and Shan? One thing for sure Marly never said Shan was lying. I believe what Shan is saying. Even through it's been 25years, I still find this story intresting. That's why it's important to come with the movie...word up!

  • rick

    Shan does have a point tho. BIZ was/is a producer in his own right and a decent one at that...........but whatever.

  • ess

    There is some truth to what Shan is sayin'. Go on D-Nice's YouTube channel, and Kane talks about him and Cool Vee finding the Blind Alley loop for Ain't No Half Steppin'. He brought the beat to Marley Marl "assemble".

  • not so

    I interviewed Kool G Rap in the late 90s and he said the same thing about bringing all the samples to the studio and telling Marley how to arrange them. Why has no one asked why Marley Marl fell off so hard on the beatmaking tip? He mentored Pete and Pete's career has overshadowed Marley something terrible. It's because Marley lacks creativity like that in beat creation. Sad to say, y'all need to holla at Kool G Rap because he can back up at least part of what Shan said.

  • IDK

    Damn, MC Shan is still mad at what happened two decades ago?? Kinda reminds me of Nas' QB's Finest song "Da Bridge 2001" where Shan made a small response to KRS-One, even though it was over a decade old since they both were at it. He's a very bitter guy. He really should start letting the past die down and not affect him right now, or else he's making himself too much of a fool.

  • Bigfoot89

    Haha the pioneers on some internet shit, its hilarious how they have the original videos in the background. Next thing you know you'll have Shan again speaking up on it, back and forth...

  • Holland

    I wander why MC Shan brought this up after all these years, good response by Marley Marl

  • chil d

    talking bout holding old azz grudges sour grapes mc shan do you still hate you lost that battle to krs 1

  • tresdemayo

    MC Shan gets bitter and bitter over the years, in the Beef documentary he was already sounding like that, dude never recovered from the bridge battle, how he got crushed by KRS and abandonned by his crew. But diggin' up those old stories in '02, responding to an interview Masta Ace gave 4 years ago... come on man

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