Los Angeles, CA – Royce Da 5’9 understands the plight of being a Slaughterhouse fan.
The once independent lyrical supergroup was formed in 2009 as a pseudo middle-finger to corporate rap dominance. Royce, Joell Ortiz, Joe Budden and KXNG Crooked had infinite respect for each other’s talents prior to collaborating, but, as the Tabernacle: Trust The Shooter-emcee describes in his recent visit to HipHopDX’s Live With Steve Lobel, that was about it.
“We started the group not friends,” Royce Da 5’9 says. “We didn’t know each other. We were just fans of each other; just admirers of each other’s work. When we started it out, it was like this special situation where we were all coming together to save Hip Hop from the underground perspective. The idea was to do maybe a song here, a song there and we ended up signed to Shady Records. We look up and we’re just signed. Time to move.”
While each member consistently releases material away from Slaughterhouse, the group hasn’t released a project since 2014’s House Rules. Royce understands the frustration fans feel during the hiatus and says the team is preparing for it’s next full length, which is executive produced by Just Blaze.
“Slaughterhouse in my opinion is a very time-sensitive brand,” Royce explains. “Our fans want music now. They don’t wanna hear ‘Royce gotta roll his album out, then Joell [Ortiz] gotta roll his album out.’ In actuality, we’re on the phone going, ‘OK, when’s your roll-out finished? OK, when are you gonna be done? When’s the best time for us to get together and push this thing because we got a body of work?’ Making the music is pretty easy with us. It’s four of us. All I gotta do is write a verse, maybe a hook. All we gotta do is agree on the beat, agree on the direction and it’s pretty simple. We made our first album [Slaughterhouse] in a week. Right now, we’re sitting on a body of work and we’re waiting on the right time for all of us to free up to push it… You can’t really move as quickly on a major as you can independent.”
Also in his conversation with Steve Lobel, Royce Da 5’9 credits Jay Z for inspiring elements of his style. Though he’s had numerous conversations with Hov, he’s still pining for the day when the legend joins him on a track.
“That’s like a bucket list thing,” Royce says. “Jay Z has this mystique about him where he’ll jump on a record once it reaches a certain level. I always said to myself, ‘I see Jay Z. We’ve had conversations. I know there’s respect there. We’ve had conversations about each other’s ability. I wonder would he jump on a record with me?’ I always say to myself, ‘What level would I have to actually take a record to make him move? What makes Jay Z go to the studio these days?’ If it’s meant to happen it’ll happen. Jay Z is responsible for a lot of elements of my style. That’s one of the ways I can close the gap if, I can jump on something with him.”