DJ Khalil Tells All: The Stories Behind His Classic Records

G-Unit “Lay You Down” (2003)

DJ Khalil: “I was making a lot of beats and I was sampling a bunch of European progressive rock. I came across this record by a group called Klaatu and they had this crazy sample [‘Doctor Marvello’], but it was pretty much a straight loop. I put those West Coast drums on it, replayed some of the sample, and it came out really dope. I remember giving it to Sha Money XL—he was the A&R of G-Unit [Records] at the time—and he loved it. He was a fan of my work but I was signed to Dr. Dre, so I had to give Dre all the stuff first. It's just funny because you never know what Dre is gonna like. He has a particular ear and my whole thing is that I just give him whatever I got. [Laughs.] You never know what he's gonna pick. So that kinda went to Dre and then ended up with Sha Money. Sha gave it to 50, and then that's pretty much how that song came about.

“It didn't make the album, but they also had a version with Snoop Dogg on it. I've heard it. They played it for me and I was like, ‘Snoop is on this?’ And it was just dope because I had never done anything with Snoop, so to hear it I was like, ‘This is crazy.’ But Snoop said some controversial things and it wouldn't have been a good look for G-Unit if they had put it out. Snoop was kinda calling out some people in the song and 50 had to take his verse off the record. They were just like, 'Nah, we had to kill Snoop’s verse on this. We don't wanna have any issues with anybody.' It's hilarious. [Laughs.] [The verse was about Suge Knight] for the most part. It was kinda crazy but they took him off. I think it was their decision collectively, basically they didn't want Suge breathing down their necks so that's what ended up happening. I don't think that [verse will] ever surface. [Laughs.] They might have just completely deleted his verse, you know what I mean?”

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