Bun B is an icon in the South and, as part of UGK, made history as one of the most successful Southern rap groups of all time. Alongside Pimp C, Bun B (real name Bernard Freeman) accumulated several hits, including one with the Billionaire artist Jay-Z in 1999 as a featured artist on the anthemic Timbaland-produced track ‘Big Pimpin.’
Bun B, along with Pimp C (the other member of UGK), are the forefathers of Texas rap, and although they were not record-breaking, platinum-selling artists, they were the first glimmer of hope that the South had and proved that it was possible to reach beyond the Dixies.
One of UGK’s most ground-breaking tracks was ‘Pocket Full of Stones’, released in 1993 by Jive Records. It was their first track to receive regular radio play in the US and paved the way for other similar artists to achieve the same feat.
As one of hip-hop’s many regional pioneers, Bun B has always been a respected voice in hip-hop and put Houston on the map. UGK. One of the city’s most prided groups, UGK, was among the first wave of rappers from the South to start turning heads. Along with the Geto Boys, during the late 1980s and early 1990s, they were quite literally the only act from the South who were known outside of the region.
In an interview with Sway Calloway of Shade 45’s Sway In The Morning radio show in 2013, Bun B spoke about the quality of Eminem’s Shady Records roster and expressed his love for the originality of artists such as Yelawolf and Royce da 5’9″ (both of whom are in his top five rappers). However, he also spoke on his respect for Eminem as a lyricist.
As a legend, Freeman has always showed homage to other acts, especially Eminem, and in celebration of his eighth studio album, The Marshall Mathers LP 2, Bun B spoke with Complex about his favourite Eminem song.
When asked which he loved the most, Freeman responded, “I’m a big fan of Bad Meets Evil. I always felt like Eminem with Royce 5’9” are probably the roughest two-man team in hip-hop. My guy [Pimp C] ain’t here no more-so. I can’t count that. I’m talking about now. I wouldn’t want to put him up against me, and Pimp-you know? I’m not going to put that kind of pressure on those kids. But when they got back together, I was really, really pumped to see that.”
You can hear ‘Bad meets Evil’ in the video below.