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Royce da 5'9"
Birth name Ryan Montgomery
Also known as Nickel-Nine
Born July 5, 1977 (1977-07-05) (age 32)
Origin Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
Genres Hip hop
Occupations Rapper, songwriter
Years active 1998 – present
Labels Game Recordings
Columbia Records
E1 Music
M.I.C. Records
Shady Records[1]
Associated acts Eminem, Proof, DJ Premier, Slaughterhouse, Denaun Porter, D12, Bad Meets Evil, Joe Budden, Joell Ortiz, Crooked I, Nottz, Busta Rhymes, The Alchemist, Tech N9ne, Yukmouth, The Regime, Luniz, Thug Lordz
Website MySpace

Ryan Montgomery (born July 5, 1977) is a Detroit rapper known by his stage names Royce da 5'9", Royce 5'9, Royce da 59, Royce 59 & Royce. He is known for his early association with Eminem and subsequent solo career, recording primarily with DJ Premier, Nottz and Carlos "6 July" Broady, as well as ghostwriting for the likes of P. Diddy and Dr. Dre.[2] Royce was one half of the rap duo Bad Meets Evil with Eminem and currently a member of hip hop supergroup Slaughterhouse.



Early acclaim

Ryan Montgomery, born and raised on the West Side of Detroit, Michigan in the W. McNichols & Wyoming Ave. area, moved to Oak Park, Michigan when he was 10 years old, later acquiring the nickname "Royce" during highschool after wearing a Turkish link chain with an R pendant resembling the Rolls Royce symbol. He began rapping at 18, influenced mainly by Ras Kass and Redman[3]; he signed his first deal in 1998 with Tommy Boy Records, after Tommy Boy Records shut down, he signed a deal with Columbia Records where he started recording an album called Rock City, referring to Detroit's former status as home to Motown Records. When the project was heavily bootlegged, Royce left the label for Koch to re-record some of the album, eventually releasing it in 2002 as Rock City (Version 2.0). While the album didn't sell very well, the DJ Premier-produced single "Boom" gained 5'9" some underground recognition and eventually resulted in the two working together more closely.

Through his manager, Royce was introduced to Eminem at a show in 1997, and the two formed a working relationship; they formed up as a duo, Bad Meets Evil, and released several tracks together, including one called "Renegades", from which Royce's vocals would later be replaced with Jay-Z's on the latter's The Blueprint. Through Eminem, Royce would also be introduced to both Dr. Dre and execs at Game Recordings. After his manager revealed that Royce was involved in writing the tracks "The Message" and an original version of "Xxplosive" for Dre's 2001[4] (entitled "Way I Be Pimping"), Dre requested that Royce cut ties with his manager. Royce refused to fire his manager and his relationship with Dre ended.

Feud with D12

Royce had a falling-out with Eminem's Hip-Hop group D12, including mutual friend and group member Proof. This resulted in a drawn-out, public rivalry between the rapper and five of the six members, with Royce releasing three diss tracks aimed at the group. The first diss track, "Shit On You," was recorded over D12's "Shit On You" beat, and mainly attacked group member Bizarre. "Malcom X" was the second diss track, which featured Tre Little. D12 responded with "Smack Down" which was recorded over 50 Cent's "Back Down" instrumental. Proof also recorded a diss track entitled "Many Men." This was recorded over 50 Cent's "Many Men (Wish Death)" instrumental. Proof later released another diss with The Purple Gang. The track is referred to as "Beef Is Ova", and is much more hard-hitting than the first diss. Royce responded with his third diss track, which was recorded over 50 Cent's "In Da Club" instrumental. The feud ended later and Royce was featured in a mixtape of D12 released in 2008 called "Return Of the Dozen". They also went on tour in Europe and Canada together.

Solo work

2003 saw Royce link up more fully with Game Recordings. Earlier, he had recorded several tracks for the soundtrack of the video game Grand Theft Auto III, released in 2001. The in-game radio station, Game Radio FM, prominently featured Royce's "I'm the King", an Alchemist-produced solo track that (along with the publicized beef) helped elevate Royce's name beyond his association with Eminem. In 2004, he released his second and most critically successful album to date, Death is Certain, charting with another Premier-produced single, "Hip-Hop". Though many perceived it to be a dark and depressing album due to his alleged alcoholism and severed friendships, Royce has maintained it was simply his anger and passion showing through[5].

After the relative success of his sophomore effort, the MC put out a third solo project, Independent's Day, in 2005. This was met with less acclaim than either of his previous releases. During this time, the rivalry between Royce and former friend Proof reached a boiling point in the streets of Detroit, on an occasion where the two rappers drew guns; they were subsequently arrested, and left to work out their differences while spending the night in neighboring cells in jail.[6] Though the MC had planned other projects involving Nottz and his former crew, D-Elite, these were cut short after a sentencing to one year in prison for a DUI.[7]

Release from prison

After his release in 2007, Royce went on to link up heavily with DJ Premier and Statik Selektah, putting out the mixtape The Bar Exam, an internet release which was critically acclaimed. He also announced an album with Premier; in an interview with Elemental Magazine, Royce stated that, contrary to rumors, Preem would not be producing the entirety of his upcoming album, but will be overseeing the project as Executive Producer, handpicking all of the beats. Following The Bar Exam, Royce wrote the single for Diddy's album Press Play, "Tell Me." Following this, the producer expressed interest in signing the lyricist to Bad Boy;[8] Nas has also stated that he would like to sign Royce to his Def Jam imprint, The Jones Experience.[9] Neither of these deals, however, materialized.

In early '08 Montgomery confirmed that he has officially resolved misunderstandings between himself and Eminem. Em told Royce that he has "some of the best shit recorded right now that he's ever done in his life." He explained that a recording session between the two has yet to take place, despite rumors about a reunion track produced by DJ Premier.[10] 5'9" digitally released The Bar Exam 2 with DJ Green Lantern later in the year, as well as a retail version of the mixtape, called The Album; the projects featured production from Green Lantern, 9th Wonder, Premier and 6 July, among others. Later worked on his Premier-assisted retail release, Street Hop, the lead single of which was "Shake This," also produced by DJ Premier. The video to the song circulated the internet, and the project was released 20th October 2009. The album was well received by critics.[11].


Joe Budden reached out to Crooked I, Royce Da 5'9", Joell Ortiz, and Nino Bless for a track titled "Slaughterhouse" on his digital release, Halfway House. [12] Based on the reception of the track, they decided to form a super-group, minus Nino Bless, and named it after the first song they made together. [12] They released numerous songs throughout early 2009, building a buzz for their self-titled album, which was released through E1 on August 11, 2009. [13] The album features production from Alchemist, DJ Khalil, Mr. Porter, Streetrunner, plus guest appearances from Pharoahe Monch, K. Young, and The New Royales. Royce is currently in talks to sign with Shady Records, along with the other members of Slaughterhouse. [14]


Solo albums

Collaboration albums

Extended plays


Other albums

  • The Bar Exam 2: The Album (2008)


External links

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