This interview was done about a year and a half after the Outsidaz and Bizarre interviews I recently posted. Eminem was working on his Marshall Mathers LP, and with the new-found power of Shady Records behind them, The Dirty Dozen were preparing their first release as a crew. Proof and Eminem were out in LA, but the rest of. the group came through to represent.
So, want to start off by running down the line-up of the Dirty Dozen?
Denine: First off, I'm gonna run it down like this. There's Slim Shady, Eminem. That's one person. Then you got Dirty Harry, Big Proof. That's two/ four people. I'm the Con Artist, Denine Porter. That's me, the producer.
Bizarre: I'm the idiotic Bizarre, and Peter S. Bizarre. That's six, plus him, is eight. Who else we got?
Swift: Swift or Swifty McVeigh. That's ten.
Von: And I'm Conniver, a.k.a. Von; and that makes twelve right there. D12. Dirty Dozen.
So, how did y'all come together? How did the Dirty Dozen form?
Denine: It all started back in Detroit. Em was trying to do his thing, and everybody else was doing their solo things. And Em came over my house one day 'cause he need some beats for his new album, Infinite. I was doing beats at the time, but I wasn't really rhyming that much. Then he came through, and he met Bizarre... And Proof already knew Em and me.
Bizarre: Proof kinda started the Dirty Dozen; he came up with the idea. We were in the car, driving back from New York, and he said he wanted to start this concept called the Dirty Dozen, where we all got alteregos. I remember we were all over my house, and Eminem came over and said, "Yo, I wanna start this Dirty Dozen thing; I wanna bring it on my new album and I'm gonna show you how raw I am," and he lifted up his shirt and he had "Slim Shady" on his arm. It was like, "Slim Shady? What's that mean?" He was like, "Slim Shady; that's my second character." 'Cause he was the only one who couldn't think of a character for a long time. And we just formed together and started droppin' songs in Eminem's basement, on the eight-track.
So, this is basically gonna be your first release now, on Shady Records, as a group...
I mean, you came together for some stuff with Re-Al, that didn't actually surface, right? What's the deal with...
Bizarre: Well, Re-Al Entertainment, I don't really wanna comment on...
Denine: It's not happening!
Bizarre: It's just not happening. The Dirty Dozen's been through a lot of phases. With Re-Al Entertainment, we were doing a little demo thing, we got on this little compilation album type of thing, but as we grew as a group, we moved on to bigger and better things.
Right; and now you got Shady Records, which is of course Eminem's label. And now you're doing an album for them, right?
Bizarre: Right. Interscope/ Shady Records.
Have you got a title for it yet?
Denine: No, no title. You can call it Sick. You can call it Foul, Nasty, Perverted, whatever you want to call it. I don't care, man. Whatever the name of the album is, you're gonna have your own name for it.
So what're some of the ideas behind the album and the tracks?
Denine: Just the darkest... sayin' what we wanna say. We don't care what everybody else is doing, we're just saying what we wanna say.
Bizarre: Concepts, ideas, sickness, skillfulness... it's all coming together as one. It's gonna be fresh; check it out.
So, do y'all have an estimated date for when this is coming out?
Bizarre: Basically, right now, we're all focused on Eminem's second album. We're all over there. D12 is all over the album: ad-libs, back-ups, hooks. Then, after we finish with the Eminem album, our album will drop shortly afterwards.
And the album's called Marshall Mathers, right?
Denine: Yeah, it's sick, sick. It's foul.
So, tell us about your solo projects you got coming out... I know you did the Attack of the Weirdos EP...
Bizarre: Yeah, I did Attack of the Weirdos, but right now I'm focusing on this Dirty Dozen thing, so my solo stuff is on hold. The whole crew's solo stuff is on hold to concentrate on this D12 album.
Swift: It's all about Dirty Dozen right now.
Is that the same with Proof? 'Cause I've been seeing all the ads for Proof with Maurice Malone management...
Denine: He's trying to get his porno career started, so he's doing his thing... We sign to labels and then we get dropped... And, this time, we're gonna do it for real. But all that other stuff is on hold while we focus on this.
Bizarre: Everything is on hold for D12. Proof is gonna be doing his thing with Maurice Malone later on, down the line, but right now, it's strictly D12.
You got any of this album recorded yet?
Bizarre: Yeah, we got a couple songs recorded. We're in the studio, droppin' it right now.
Denine: We can't ever have enough. We're always doing songs. We never get tired of doing songs.
You've got a bunch of projects coming out now, right? Like that Ruckus/ Paradime joint...
Bizarre: Well, you can catch us on the Tony Touch album, coming out within a month. Then we're on the new Soundbombing for Rawkus; that's coming out pretty soon. And we're on Eminem's new LP, Marshall Mathers. So, that's three things where you can catch the D12. And you can catch us right here!
And, also, you're part of The Outsidaz, who just put out an EP - Night Life - and they've got an LP coming out.
Bizarre: Yeah, The Outsidaz got an LP coming out. Big up to the Outsidaz; they're doing their thing.
So, are you gonna be on the LP?
Bizarre: Yeah, I'm on the LP; Outsidaz is our family. Denine's doing beats on the album.
Denine: We're gonna spread things out... we're just gonna hit everybody off; we don't care who it is. We'll gonna get on The Outsidaz' joint, we'll gonna get on Da Ruckus' joint. Whatever, we'll do it. You want us, come get us. If you want some sickness, come get us.
And you've got the new single you're doin' on Shady...
Bizarre: Yeah, we got an underground single about to drop. It's limited edition, classic, two vinyls. Gonna be very, very hard to get. It's gonna be in all the phat vinyl places; it's gonna be hot. Check it out.
Denine: Strictly for the DJs. Something new. Everything we do is gonna be on some next shit.
Bizarre: Slim Shady'll be all over it.
So, what do y'all think about the Detroit hip-hop scene in general? Of course, lately, it's been getting a lot of attention with Eminem, Kid Rock, etc. But it's been making noise for a long time...
Bizarre: What do we feel about it? Well... 1, 2, 3.
Dirty Dozen: (Singing) What happened to the Detroit hip-hop scene? WJOB talking about, "keep it clean."
Denine: It's dope, but it's the same way anywhere. You've got people hatin' on you, but we don't give a F, you know? Regardless of what anybody else does, we're doing our thing, and, when we try to help people out, sometimes they hate on you, and that's when they get their mouth blew out.
Bizarre: Detroit's coming up as a whole; the hip-hop scene's boomin'. You've got Slim Shady, you've got Royce the 5-9, you've got...
Swift: Slum Village.
Bizarre: I mean, look around, man. We've got at least seven or eight groups with major deals. It's gonna get better and better.
Von: There's a lot of talent in Detroit, too. It's just a little less, but there's much talent in Detroit. Much. But...
Denine: Some of 'em gotta get off that bull-tripping, like they're just better than anybody anyway.
Bizarre: But we love our dirty, stinking pothole.
Von: Nothin' like the D.
Well, now y'all are about to come out on a more international level, since Shady Records is gonna be bringing in some major distribution. Are you gonna change your styles at all to reach a broader audience?
Bizarre: Well, people are likin' our styles right now, so we're gonna keep it like that. If it works, it works. We've been to Milwaukee, Chicago, on the Lyricist Lounge tour, and they love us. So, we ain't changing. It's the same filthiness. Just think about Eminem, and the stuff he's kicking. It's to that degree, but even sicker. And he ain't even the sickest person in our clique. ...He can get sick, though.
Denine: You never know what to expect.
But some people might even say that Eminem's changed, especially with the production styles and all that... like the various remixes from the EP to the LP.
Bizarre: Well, I wouldn't say that he's changed; I'd say that he's grown as an artist. And, basically, he's workin' with the number one producer in the world. And Dre always knows how he wants stuff to sound. He's constantly in the studio with us, makin' sure our stuff is right, our vocals are right. And every "the" and "how" has to be done over 'till it's done right.
Swift: "Perfectionist," that's the term.
Denine: You gotta think, when you take a step, it's not you changing, it's a growth with every album. And some people tend to forget that. And if you don't grow, you won't sell anymore records. If you don't care about sellin' records, then you're gonna stay the way that you stay, but he's not changing; we're not changing. It's just what we've been doing, only getting better with time.
So, have you got any outside producers working on this album? And is Dre working on this?
Bizarre: Yeah, Dre is definitely gonna be involved on this album; make note of that. As far as outside MCs or whatever: not really, not yet. There's six of us, so it's gonna be hard for us to be on every song. As far as producers, we've got my man Denine Porter, DJ Head, and Eminem. They're the three producers we're mainly working with.
And, finally, have you got anything to say the readers now? With Eminem, you're getting an audience now, and you've finally gotten a chance to come up after a long time...
Denine: Uh, get off my dick, I'm in show business.
Von: Get prepared for the sickness. That's it. That's the bottom line, man. It's about to be sick. I bet, after this album, everybody's gonna try to come with some real sick, sick stuff.
Bizarre: Check out the album, and make sure you buy it, because, after this, I'll be in jail for rape.
Denine: Yeah, I've got a couple credit card schemes I'm about to pay for, anyway. So, I'm trying to finish this album before the feds catch up with me.
Swift: I've got a few record labels to grenade up.
Von: And I'm just gonna be the get away driver, man. I just gotta be everywhere, so that's just that.
Denine: And, also, we wanna make sure y'all know this. Proof and Eminem, right now, are in LA with Ron Jeremy, workin' on a new movie, called Dirty Dozen In the Booty. ...And Em ain't wear his briefs.
Bizarre: That is true, though. They are in LA...
Denine: Working on a movie.
Bizarre: Finally, we just wanna say peace to members that were close to our hearts. First, Bugz, a member of D12. Then, my man Slang Ton, of The Outsidaz; he just passed away, too.
Denine: They both were dope. In fact, we're gonna have Bugz on our album; you're gonna be able to hear Bugz.
Bizarre: As a matter of fact, he did a song with Slang that might be on the album.