Eminem wants to make it very clear: He never claimed, nor ever wanted, to be the king of hip-hop.
Slim addressed this topic during an extensive interview with rap veteran Kxng Crooked, who alluded to Lord Jamar's previous claims that Em was a "guest in the house of hip-hop."
"I don't know if I've got a chance to say this yet, but the funny shit is with the whole beef with a certain person, I never said I wasn't a guest," Eminem explained at the 20:48-minute mark. "I'm absolutely a guest. I never said I wasn't. And I never said I was king of anything, right? I had a song called "Kings Never Die," but it wasn't me saying [I'm the king] ... I never want to be the king of hip-hop. Who the fuck is the king of hip-hop? Is there a king of hip-hop?"
He continued: "People would say, 'Just because you sell the most records doesn't mean you're the best. Just because you can rap 40 million syllables doesn't mean you're the best' ... I care more about the craft than any of the other shit."
Eminem also spoke about his ongoing efforts to improve his craft, being his harshest critic, taking cues from other artists, and paying attention to the next generation of rappers. Em tells Crook that he actually spends his Saturdays listening to new music to remain familiar with the current hip-hop landscape.
"I'm so in love with this art form, right? And I'm so passionate about it, because it's really the only thing I ever was good at ... I just love it. I love to watch, like, the YBN Cordaes come up. You're like, 'Oh shit, he's going to be the next [big thing],'" he said, before shouting out J. Cole and Kendrick Lamar. "... That's another one of the things that make it fun too, being able to watch Cole and Kendrick come up, and seeing how great they were right off the bat. Aside from them, I pay attention to everything going on. All the new shit I try to stay up on—who's doing what, flow patterns, that kind of shit, because it's always interesting to me. Like DaBaby, I never know where his rhymes are gonna land. And that shit is so interesting to me because he does it so well."