Denaun Porter reflects on meeting J. Cole and learning the rapper’s favorite Eminem song, a choice that left him surprised.
While many fans appreciate Eminem‘s first-ever album Infinite, the impact that Denaun Porter had on the project should not go uncelebrated. A key player in bringing Em’s debut to life, Denaun honed his craft as a producer, working closely with Slim and Proof to not only craft beats, but songs.
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“We started off making albums,” he revealed, during our extensive conversation — a must-read for D12 fans. “That’s me and Em’s relationship. So anytime he was working on an album, that was the thing. I started off producing, I didn’t start off making beats. On Infinite, I knew I wanted it to sound soulful. I wanted people to hear him over some shit like that. I knew he could rap. The first thing I told him was “Em, you gotta slow down.” He rapped so fast, I was like man could you say this slower? And that started it.”
While Infinite isn’t entirely easy to find in its entirety — the album has yet to hit streaming services, nor does it seem a likely possibility — Em actually uploaded the title track not too long ago. A lyrically-driven blast from the past, the classic track has endured as a fan-favorite, not to mention a window into Eminem formative style.
In fact, the track has gained such a following that Denaun was actually surprised to learn that J. Cole was a die-hard “Infinite” fan. “J. Cole told me he loved the beat from “Infinite” and it fucked me up,” revealed Denaun, with a laugh. “I was like, how did you even know about that song! He said it was one of his favorite joints. I was flattered by that, and I was around his age when he told me that.”
For the record, the respect between Cole and Em runs deep, despite the fact they’ve never collaborated…yet. Cole previously professed to be a die-hard Em fan, while Slim made sure to shout out Cole on “The Ringer” and “Fall” off Kamikaze. And given his own stylistic preference, it’s not surprising to see Cole hold Infinite in such high esteem. For more gems from Mr. Porter — and rest assured, there are an abundance — be sure to check out our recent interview with the Detroit icon right here.