Grammy-winning rapper Eminem addresses his run in hip-hop and an eventual retirement from rhyming in the new VIBE issue.
In his cover feature, Em contemplates how many more years he will continue to release music.
“…Honestly, I don’t know how much longer I have in this game. I’m always going to love hip-hop. But how much longer am I going to still do it? I couldn’t give you an answer. But the day that this is not better than the last will probably be the day I stop…I do love it so much. But even if I was rapping at 50 [years old], I don’t now if I would put it out. I know it always makes me feel better to lay things to tape, and–‘Lay the tape.’ See, I’m old school. The fans might say the sh*t is garbage. You don’t know how long people are going to want you around…Realistically, if I don’t rap, what the f*ck am I going to do? It’s too late to be unfamous at this point.” (VIBE)
Last year, Em said he could see himself putting down the microphone for good after at least two more decades.
“It was, ‘I don’t want to be a rapper when I’m 40,’ and the next time we talk it will be, “I don’t want to be a rapper when I’m 50.” Sixty is the cut-off. I can’t be no 60-year-old rapper, son!” (Complex)
Hip-hop pioneer Rakim recently spoke with SOHH about when rappers should call it quits.
“Yeah, I think what’s happening is, rappers are becoming, especially for people that love a rapper, rap and hip-hop come to party,” Rakim explained. “You can’t just put it down. It’s not like sports where you know, you lose a step. You can lose skills in rapping of course, but it’s a little different man and I think sitting back and watching the R&B genre, you got, at any awards show and you see brothers like Al Green come out and tear it down. It’s longevity in R&B and I think if it’s done right, to an extent, I think we can have a little longer gevity in hip-hop, it don’t just have to be a young music anymore. You got people like myself, I’m in my 40’s now, early, early early like real early. I just touched 40, but still, I don’t plan on stop listening to rap anytime soon and I don’t plan stop rhyming no time soon and it’s that tug-of-war with the fans. Every time you see the fans or go to a show, they’re like ‘Yo, do another album,’ so it’s like that love between the two, the fans and your music. I think we should stretch out our age limit as far as hip-hop ’cause if that’s the case, I think when brothers grow up they just want to leave rap entirely and listen to other genres of music so I think there is room for a little mature sound of hip-hop, for the older, grown and sexy, whatever you wanna call it.” (SOHH)
In 2009, Lil Wayne said owning a sports team would be his ideal career after rap.
“I always said I ain’t wanna do this no more after 35, I ain’t wanna do it no more,” Wayne revealed in an interview with radio personality Tim Westwood. “So any time before 30 and 35, I might give it up. [But now] I gotta work as hard as I can so I ain’t gotta look back. [When I retire, I’ll] do something else, I’m gonna retire from this and probably jump into some ownership of some sports team or you know, I’m very heavy into sports. Any sport. [I’d want ownership] of the team. It doesn’t matter, it could be basketball, it could be baseball, of course it wouldn’t be baseball, there’s too much money to own that, but it could be basketball or football, it wouldn’t matter. I could buy into a baseball team with someone.” (Tim Westwood TV)
Check out Rakim speaking with SOHH about rap retirement down below: