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Eminem Rehashes Melle Mel Controversy With “Tobey”

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Eminem has released a new single called “Tobey” featuring Big Sean and Babytron. The track serves as the second single from Em’s forthcoming set, The Death of Slim Shady (Coup de Grâce), and follow-up to “Houdini.” Contrary to “Houdini,” the latest offering from the project is less kinetic and focuses more on bars than beats.

For Eminem’s verse, he revisits the 2023 controversy involving Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five member Melle Mel.

“Yet here I sit on your list though at five (Hm), which still was fine/But just know inside, to me, that s###’s hilarious, so when I (Haha)/Get dissed though and by a pioneer/Who was one of the reasons why I am here/They tell me I should just let that s### go and slide (Why?)/’Melle Mel shouldn’t get no reply’ (Why?) ‘That man is a legend,’ b####, so am I (Haha, yeah).”

The feud between Melle Mel and Eminem escalated last year, when Em responded to Melle Mel’s previous comments in which he suggested that Slim Shady’s success was largely due to his race. In a scathing verse on the track “Realest” featuring Ez Mil, Eminem addressed these claims head-on, stating that while his skin color has been a topic of discussion, it hasn’t guaranteed his success. He also took a direct jab at Melle Mel, referring to him as a “juice head” whose “brain is half destroyed” due to steroid use​.

Melle Mel didn’t take the comments lightly and fired back with his own diss track, but it was met with mixed reviews. Critics and fans alike felt that Melle Mel’s response lacked the punch and creativity needed to effectively counter Eminem’s sharp lyrics. The back-and-forth not only reignited discussions about race and recognition Hip-Hop but also highlighted the generational divide within the genre.

Melle Mel ultimately expressed regret over dissing Eminem. As he wrote in a statement last August, “In light of the 50th anniversary of Hip-Hop, my original intention was to contribute an engaging and enjoyable endeavor to enrich the cultural landscape. Regrettably, my response fell short in its execution, and I accept full responsibility for the misjudgment. I acknowledge that my perspective was ill-conceived and I am prepared to take ownership of this oversight.”

Kyle Eustice

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