Eminem and G-Unit have a long collaborative history dating back to the early 2000s when 50 Cent was first discovered by Eminem and signed to his Shady Records and Aftermath Entertainment labels.
However, over the years there have been rumored tensions between Eminem and Tony Yayo – one of the original members of G-Unit alongside 50 Cent and Lloyd Banks. Yayo has finally broken his silence and opened up about what problems existed between him and Slim Shady.
Chapter 1: G-Unit’s Origins with Eminem
Eminem was an early supporter of 50 Cent and subsequently the entire G-Unit crew:
- He was impressed by 50’s mixtape and signed him to his labels Shady Records and Aftermath Entertainment in 2002.
- This deal was crucial in allowing 50 Cent to breakthrough fully into the mainstream music industry.
- 50 Cent would also sign his crew G-Unit consisting of Lloyd Banks and Tony Yayo to his G-Unit Records label.
- As G-Unit blew up, they collaborated frequently with Eminem on hit songs like “Patiently Waiting.”
Eminem’s mentorship and co-sign played a major role in 50 Cent and G-Unit’s success. But Tony Yayo had issues brewing behind the scenes…
Chapter 2: Yayo’s Complaints About Promotion and Pay
In a recent interview, Tony Yayo revealed some of his early problems with Eminem stemmed from feeling under-compensated compared to 50 Cent and Lloyd Banks:
- Yayo felt he wasn’t being paid or promoted properly by Shady/Aftermath despite his equal contributions to G-Unit.
- “They put Lloyd Banks in a movie (Incredible Hulk). They gave Lloyd Banks an album. They gave Young Buck an album too.”
- Yayo also complained about disproportionate pay: “When Em gave 50 a million dollars, me and Banks put out our album at the same time. But he gave Banks the million and didn’t give me nothing.”
- “I fought the same fight. I sold the same amount of records. But business-wise, they showing no love.”
This lack of perceived fairness caused underlying friction.
Chapter 3: Eminem’s Lack of Interest in Tony Yayo
According to Tony Yayo, another issue was Eminem seeming disinterested in him as an individual artist:
- “Em never worked with me. He never cut a record with me.”
- “Em would come into the studio, lay something for 50 or lay something for Banks. It was no problem. But for me, it was like moving a mountain.”
- Yayo took this personal: “So my relationship really changed with Em. It was all business.”
- He felt marginalized despite his equal role in G-Unit’s origins and success.
This only added to Yayo’s animosity despite the initial boost Eminem provided 50 Cent.
Chapter 4: Water Under the Bridge
However, in recent years Tony Yayo seems to have made peace regarding his past issues with Eminem:
- He understands business reasons likely factored into decisions rather than personal disrespect.
- Their relationship was damaged by middlemen surrounding Eminem and muddied communication.
- Time has passed, and they’ve all matured since G-Unit’s peak hype.
- Yayo admits, “We were young. We were reckless.”
Despite lingering disappointment, Tony Yayo seems willing to bury the hatchet regarding Eminem. He’s grateful for Em’s role in 50’s success. The tensions appear to be water under the bridge now.
Moving Past Beef for the Music
At the end of the day, Eminem was indispensable in launching 50 Cent’s rise, which paved the way for Lloyd Banks and Tony Yayo. Yayo can’t deny that, regardless of any lingering resentment.
Over time, cooler heads have prevailed. Tony Yayo will always be 50’s right-hand man regardless of label issues with Eminem. The G-Unit legacy remains intact along with Eminem’s role in unlocking their success.
For the culture and the music, hopefully Eminem and Tony Yayo continue moving past any lingering issues. When G-Unit was at its peak, the music felt untouchable. At their best, no petty beefs could get in the way of greatness.