In the latest issue of Interview, Eminem opens up about an array of topics, from working with Dr. Dre to taking on Donald Trump with his new album, “Revival”, and also gets candid about his unexpected friendship with Elton John — mainly because it’s Sir Elton conducting the interview!
At the time, the two seemed unlikely to strike up a friendship when they performed together at the 2001 Grammy Awards, at a time when Slim Shady was taking heat from those who accused him of promoting homophobia in his rap lyrics.
Since then, however, the “Rocket Man” singer and the “8 Mile” star have become close pals — Eminem even gave Sir Elton and husband David Furnish some diamond-encrusted sex toys for their wedding — and they discuss their friendship during the interview.
When John, 70, remarks that he’ll never forget the first time they met, Eminem remarks: “I’ll never forget it either — and I was on drugs.”
“You were on drugs?” John remarks.
“Oh, I was for sure on drugs when we met,” replies Eminem, 45.
John admits, “I couldn’t tell. I was just mesmerized by you and your performance; it made the hairs on the back of my arms stand up. It was like seeing Mick Jagger for the first time. I hadn’t really been exposed to that kind of rap in live performance before, and it was electrifying. And when that s**t was thrown at you — about you being homophobic — I just thought, ‘I’m not standing for this. It’s nonsense.’ I had to stand up and defend you. That Grammy performance was the start of a lovely friendship and I’m grateful for that.”
“Likewise,” agrees Eminem. “That was a crazy time for me. I don’t know if I was actually on drugs when we met, but that was right around the start of my using.”
As John points out, Eminem has been clean “for a long time now,” with Emimen noting he’s been sober for nine years now.
“Your sobriety day is in my diary,” John tells Eminem. “I’m so proud of you. I’m 27 years clean, and when you get clean, you see things in a different way. It makes your life so much more manageable. It seems to have made all the difference — I can tell when I speak to you.”
You can read more of their discussion in the latest issue of Interview.