Action Bronson is undoubtedly one of the most unique voices in the hip hop game. The chef-turned-rapper was born in Queens in 1983, and, after graduating from culinary school, spent years working in a kitchen before an injury forced him to consider other options.
Since then, he has released a slew of mixtapes, EPs and albums, including 2020’s Only For Dolphins. As well as being one of the most beloved hip-hop artists on the scene, he is also a writer, chef, and television presenter. His most recent book, F*ck It, I’ll Start Tomorrow: A True Story was published in 2021.
For Bronson, there’s one rapper who stands head and shoulders above the rest: the immortal Eminem. Since he rose to the top with his The Slim Shady LP, Marshall Mathers has been an inspiration to countless aspiring rappers; Bronson was no exception. For him, Eminem’s success was a wonder to behold. As he later revealed: “I grew up on Em. I remember watching all those videos, watching MTV, seeing news about him. It was just a mania. I guess you can compare it to The Beatles when they took over America back in the day. It was next level.”
“One thing that sticks out of my mind is when TRL was popping, me and my friend Laura took the train to the city and we tried to go over there to see him,” Bronson continued. “We wanted to be in the crowd but there were just too many people in the street. We were just chilling on 42nd Street because we didn’t make it. But TRL was popping at that point. And oh my God, he came and shut fucking Times Square down.”
On being asked to name his favourite Eminem record, the pot-smoking, hard-swearing rapper was quick to assert: “The Slim Shady LP is definitely my favourite. I was listening to Eminem back in the day, before he was even popular, his freestyles and shit. The one he does with Thirstin Howl III was crazy.”
But while Slim Shady LP holds the top spot in terms of all-round quality, it’s Eminem’s confessional third album, The Marshall Mathers LP, that contains Bronson’s favourite ever Em track “I had the pleasure of going to an Eminem concert when I was in London performing with Em at a festival,” he began. “You forget how many goddamn hits he has. When ‘The Way I Am’ went on, I went crazy. That’s my favourite one. That song right there is a serious song.”
Action Bronson is currently coming to the end of his tour with The Alchemist and Earl Sweatshirt, the last few shows of which will see the trio hit up Atlanta on February 22nd, Hueston on the 25th, Dallas on the 27th, Austin on the 28th, and Tempe on March 3rd. To find out more about the tour and grab a copy of F*ck It, I’ll Start Tomorrow, visit Bronson’s website.