Exclusive: Royce da 5’9" Talks Sobriety, Eminem, & Bad Meets Evil

Royce da 5’9″ and Eminem have a bond that’s deeper than rap. The Detroit rapper reveals this on “Stay Woke” f his new album Book Ryan.

“Thanks to Marshall I’m sober, doin’ what I enjoy doin’,” he raps on the track.

During a recent visit to Rap-Up HQ, Royce opened up about Em’s instrumental role in his sobriety. “Before I even decided to stop drinking,” explains Ryan. “He was like, ‘If you ever feel like you got a problem, you know you can call me, right?’ I was like, ‘What kinda problem?’ He was like, ‘Just with drinking.’ I was like, ‘Oh shit. Okay. Thank you, man. I appreciate that.’ It kind bothered me for awhile, because I didn’t know if he was saying that he felt like I had a problem. What was he saying? But I felt like that was cool him as a friend to try to take that step with me.”

Then, one day, Royce had what he calls a “spiritual awakening” in his New York hotel room. He woke up and suddenly felt a shift. “It’s time to stop,” he told himself. “If I don’t act on this feeling now, I don’t think I’ll survive it.”

The first person Royce called was Eminem. “When I went home, he put me in this hospital with this doctor and I got some the best sleep that I got in a long time,” he adds. “He linked me up with my therapist, who is still my therapist today, and my sponsor today. I haven’t had a drink since. That was 6 years ago.”

Their friendship may result in more music. The guys trade bars on “Caterpillar” f Royce’s new LP, but the door is open for another Bad Meets Evil project. “The chances are pretty good,” Royce explains. “He’s stronger than ever and I’m stronger than ever. It’s just a time thing. It’s very hard to dictate what the time is gonna do.”