Royce da 5'9"
|Royce da 5'9"|
Royce da 5'9" in 2008
|Birth name||Ryan Daniel Montgomery|
|Also known as||Royce Nickel 9|
|Born||July 5, 1977|
|Origin||Detroit, Michigan, U.S.|
|Occupations||Rapper, songwriter, record producer|
|Labels||Shady Records, Interscope Records (present)
Columbia Records, E1 Music, Game Recordings, Gracie Productions, M.I.C. Records, One Records (former)
|Associated acts||Bad Meets Evil, Slaughterhouse, DJ Premier, Elzhi, Mr. Porter|
Ryan Daniel Montgomery (born July 5, 1977), better known by his stage name Royce da 5'9", is an American rapper from Detroit, Michigan. He is best known for his longtime association with Eminem as well as his solo career, recording primarily with Carlos "6 July" Broady and DJ Premier, as well as ghostwriting for the likes of Diddy and Dr. Dre. Royce is one half of the rap duo Bad Meets Evil with Eminem and also a member of hip hop group Slaughterhouse. The editors of About.com ranked him No. 33 on their list of the Top 50 MCs of Our Time (1987–2007).
Early life and education
Montgomery was born and raised on the western side of Detroit, Michigan on W. McNichols & Wyoming Ave. He moved to Oak Park, Michigan when he was 10 years old, later acquiring the nickname "Royce" during high school after wearing a Turkish link chain with an R pendant resembling the Rolls Royce symbol. He started rapping at age 18, influenced mainly by Ras Kass, Redman, Tupac Shakur, The Notorious B.I.G. and N.W.A. He signed his first deal in 1998 with Tommy Boy Records, after the label shut down, he signed a deal with Columbia where he started recording an album called Rock City, referring to Detroit's former status as home to Motown Records. When the project was heavily bootlegged, Royce left the label for Koch to re-record some of the album, eventually releasing it in 2002 as Rock City (Version 2.0). While the album did not sell very well, the DJ Premier-produced single "Boom" gained Royce some underground recognition and eventually resulted in the two working together more closely.
Through his manager, Royce was introduced to Eminem in 1997, and the two formed a working relationship; they formed up as a duo, Bad Meets Evil, and released several tracks together. Royce appeared on Eminem's major-label debut studio album The Slim Shady LP, in which he was featured on a song called "Bad Meets Evil". However, many of the CD's pressed and released did not have this song on them. Royce and Eminem also released a track called "Renegades", from which Royce's vocals would later be replaced with Jay-Z's on the latter's The Blueprint. Through Eminem, Royce would also be introduced to both Dr. Dre and execs at Game Recordings. After Royce's manager Kino stated: "I’ve seen Em' sit Dre down like a pupil and coach him on rhymes." on a phone interview, Dr. Dre requested that Royce cut ties with Kino. Royce refused to fire his manager Kino, thus Royce's relationship with Dre ended.
Feud with D12
Royce had a falling out with D12, including mutual friend and group member Proof. This resulted in a drawn-out, public rivalry between the rapper and five of the six members, with Royce releasing three diss tracks aimed at the group. The first diss track, "Shit on You", was recorded over instrumental of D12's song with the same name and mainly attacked group member Bizarre. "Malcolm X" was the second diss track, which featured Tré Little. D12 responded with "Smack Down" which was recorded over 50 Cent's "Back Down" instrumental. Proof also recorded a diss track entitled "Many Men". This was recorded over 50 Cent's "Many Men (Wish Death)" instrumental. Proof later released another diss with The Purple Gang called "Beef Is Ova". Royce responded with his third diss track, which was recorded over 50 Cent's "In Da Club" instrumental titled "Death Day". In the summer of 2003, D12 member Proof confronted Royce outside a club in Detroit. Violence erupted between the rappers' entourage, leading to the Police being called, and Proof and Royce's arrest. The two were detained overnight in adjacent cells where they talked out their differences and ended the feud. A few years later Royce was featured in a mixtape of D12 released in 2008 called Return of the Dozen. They also went on tour in Europe and Canada together.
Royce signed with Game Recordings, for whom he had recorded several tracks for the soundtrack of the video game Grand Theft Auto III, released in 2001. The in-game radio station, Game Radio FM, prominently featured Royce's "I'm the King" and The Alchemist-produced solo track, which (along with the publicized beef) helped elevate Royce's name beyond his association with Eminem. In 2001, Royce was featured on pop singer Willa Ford's song "I Wanna Be Bad". In 2004, he released his second and most critically successful album to date, Death Is Certain, charting with another Premier-produced single, "Hip-Hop".
After the relative success of his sophomore effort, Royce put out a third solo project, Independent's Day, in 2005. This was met with less acclaim than either of his previous releases. During this time, the rivalry between Royce and former friend Proof reached a boiling point in the streets of Detroit, on an occasion where the two rappers drew guns; they were subsequently arrested and left to work out their differences while spending the night in neighboring cells in jail. The time spent in jail led to the artists ending their feud and subsequently embarking on two overseas tours together. Though Royce had planned other projects involving Nottz and his former crew, D-Elite, these were cut short after a sentencing to one year in prison for a DUI. On August 9, 2011, Royce released his fifth album Success Is Certain. The album title serves as a play on words from his second release, Death Is Certain. He is currently working with producer S1 on his next studio album.
Release from prison
After his release in 2007, Royce with DJ Premier and Statik Selektah released the mixtape The Bar Exam. He also announced an album with Premier; in an interview with Elemental Magazine, Royce stated that, contrary to rumors, Premier would not be producing the entirety of his upcoming album, but will be overseeing the project as executive producer, handpicking all of the beats. Following The Bar Exam, Royce wrote the single for Diddy's album Press Play, "Tell Me". Following this, the producer expressed interest in signing the lyricist to Bad Boy. Nas has also stated that he would like to sign Royce to his Def Jam imprint, The Jones Experience. Neither of these deals, however, materialized.
In early 2008 Royce confirmed that he had officially resolved misunderstandings between himself and Eminem. He released The Bar Exam 2 with DJ Green Lantern later in the year, as well as a retail version of the mixtape The Album; the projects featured production from Green Lantern, 9th Wonder, DJ Premier and 6 July, among others. Later worked on his Premier-assisted retail release, Street Hop, the lead single of which was "Shake This", also produced by DJ Premier. The video to the song circulated the internet, and the project was released October 20, 2009. On May 26, 2012, Royce announced that he will release a mixtape before his next album via Twitter.
Joe Budden collaborated with Crooked I, Joell Ortiz, Royce da 5'9" and Nino Bless on a track titled "Slaughterhouse" on his digital release, Halfway House. Based on the reception of the track, they decided to form a supergroup, minus Nino Bless, and named it after the first song they made together. They released numerous songs throughout early 2009, building a buzz for their self-titled album, which was released through E1 on August 11, 2009. The album features production from DJ Khalil, Mr. Porter and The Alchemist, plus guest appearances from Pharoahe Monch, K. Young and The New Royales. The group signed with Shady Records on January 12, 2011. On August 28, 2012 Slaughterhouse released their second studio album, Welcome to: Our House. As of November 23, 2012, it has sold 146,000 copies in the United States. In June 2013, the group began recording their second album with Shady Records. Super producer Just Blaze has been tapped to be Executive Producer of the project.
Bad Meets Evil reunion
After Royce reconciled with Eminem, the duo started working again on new music and released the album Hell: The Sequel on June 14, 2011 with Eminem's label Shady Records. Two singles from the EP were released: "Fast Lane" and "Lighters" featuring Bruno Mars. The album would be certified Gold by the RIAA.
While in high school, Royce da 5'9" was generally a good student in class. He recalls in an interview by saying, "In high school I would usually excel in class depending on the teacher, I will admit I did have a bit of attention issues but actually I was a well appreciated student." Royce is a former alcoholic, who has been sober since September 11, 2012.
- 2002: Rock City
- 2004: Death Is Certain
- 2005: Independent's Day
- 2009: Slaughterhouse (with Slaughterhouse)
- 2009: Street Hop
- 2011: Hell: The Sequel (with Eminem as Bad Meets Evil)
- 2011: Success Is Certain
- 2012: Welcome to: Our House (with Slaughterhouse)
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