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Run The Jewels' Killer Mike recalls almost signing to Bad Boy, calls Puff a "genius"

"When I heard El’s beats, it hit me what I was supposed to be, but Puff called it [years prior]."

Jumping out of cars and planes with Puff Daddy? Wearing fancy new Bad Boy chains? Killer Mike says it was appealing to him and could have been a reality if a major business move could have been agreed upon.

Sitting down with his Run The Jewels partner El-P and Drink Champs hosts N.O.R.E. and DJ EFN, Mike remembered how close he was to coming over to Diddy’s legendary label.

“Puff called Run The Jewels,” Mike recalled. “Some people who follow Killer Mike may remember me running around with Puff for, like, a year. He and Big Boi were trying to broker a deal that essentially Purple Ribbon [Records] would have gave me to Bad Boy and I would have been a Bad Boy artist.”

Mike says he went in the studio with the monster mogul and heard tracks that were a soundtrack, in sorts, to Diddy’s vision of how Mike should evolve into a more multi-faceted artist.

“When I went in, Puff played, like, eight records,” Mike said. “Half the records were the aspirational records. I can rap pretty much anything that’s out. I got a few different styles. Half of [them were] whatever was going in rap--great records--the other half were from an aspirational standpoint. [They] sounded like what me and El ended up forming; not the perfect version, but they were already in the ball park of what Company Flow was doing and early Wu-Tang sounding like. That Bomb Squad-ish sounding shit. Puff was like, ‘Yo, it’s two different you's and both of them dope! I could do something with both.’”

Although Mike signing to Bad Boy never manifested, Puff’s proposed outlook on the Grammy Award-winning lyricist did. It just took a few years once Run The Jewels started to come together.

“When I got in the room and heard El’s beats, it hit me what I was supposed to be. Puff called it [years prior]: ‘This is what you should be doing.’ It just took me that long to find the perfect partner and producer to be doing it with. That’s why I never doubted [Puff’s] genius. I see why he is him.”

The duo also dives into their new tour, hip-hop’s new wave of artists, Gucci Mane’s penchant for picking stars, how the Democratic party wronged Bernie Sanders, and why hip-hop millionaires should invest in politics now.

Tune in to Drink Champs this and every Thursday at 11 PM ET on REVOLT. Be sure to catch the re-airing Saturday nights at midnight ET.

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