Eve talks Ruff Ryders

Eve Talks Her Ruff Ryder Days In New Interview, Says Group Was Protective And Supportive: “They Wanted Me To Not Just Be The Cute, Sexy Girl, They Wanted Me To Be Amazing Lyrically…I Was Very, Very Lucky”

Eve is sharing her adventures from her days as a Ruff Ryder in a new five-part BET documentary series, Ruff Ryders Chronicles

The series kicked off last week on BET, and tells the story of Ruff Ryders Entertainment, at its prime back in the late ’90s and 2000s. The group was founded by siblings Joaquin “Waah” Dean, Darin “Dee” Dean, and Chivon Dean and was primarily centered around its first artists DMX and TheLox. Other acts included Drag-On, Jin, producer Swizz Beatz, and Eve, who joined as the first woman on the label. 

“I was the most protected female on the planet at that time. I was Baby Sis, but not like, coddled. Baby Sis in a way that you were gonna protect, she hustles with us,” said Eve during an interview with Entertainment Tonight. Prior to coming on to the Ruff Ryders train, Eve spent a short time with Dr. Dre. and Aftermath. However, she said her first introduction to the rap world was when she was stripping and met fellow rapper, Mase. 

“It was a slow night, and this guy comes walking in, and one of the girls who I hung out with was like, ‘Yo, that’s that new kid, he just got signed to Puff.’ I go over there, and I’m kinda just like, ‘Yeah, what’s up, you want a dance?’… He just laughed, actually, and he was like, ‘What do you wanna do with your life?’ And I was like, ‘You don’t know me, don’t be asking about me!’ Long story short, he literally was like, ‘You’re not supposed to be here. What is it that you wanna do?’ I told him I wanna be a rapper, and he was like, ‘Get dressed, let’s go ride around the city and listen to some beats.'”

She continued: “We literally just rolled around the city until the sun came up. He listened to me rap. I never saw him again from that night until I got signed to Ruff Ryders… and he would come up to the studio almost every day while I was doing my first album, and just was such a supportive person. He opened up a church in Atlanta years after, and I was always telling people he was supposed to do that, he knows some things, and that he sent me a message that I needed to hear at that time. It was incredible.”

Eve’s debut album “Let There Be Eve…Ruff Ryders’ First Lady” came out in September 1999. The rapper said that the album was somewhat of a “diary” that detailed major events of her life. The project was completely written by her, and was later certified double platinum. The album featured hits like “Gotta Man” and “Love Is Blind,” which she wrote when she was just 16. 

Elsewhere in the interview, Eve spoke on the many times that she would want to go out, but the group was concerned for her safety. 

“Anytime I tried to go out, I was told to stay in the room,” she said. “But when I did go out, listen, it was nuts. It was nuts. It was on another level. I’ve never ever seen another club in that way, with people partying and people just having fun.” Eve went on to discuss how Grammy-winning hits “Let Me Blow Ya Mind,” a collaborative record with #GwenStefani, helped boost her even further. “She gave me an audience I didn’t have. And vice versa, I gave her an audience she didn’t have. I’ve always been a huge No Doubt fan, a huge Gwen fan, and we were the same label, and I was like, ‘Why not make this happen?'” She added that she knew their unique artistries would work well together. “As much as she was a girly girl like I was, she was a tomboy like I was. So I recognized that in her, I knew it was gonna work.”

The rapper also explained that Ruff Ryders wanted her to be a multifaceted artist. “They protected me,” she said of the group. “They wanted me to not just be the cute, sexy girl; they wanted me to be amazing lyrically… I was very, very lucky.” 

Now, Eve is a wife and television show host. In fact, when it comes to returning to “The Talk,” she says the details are still being ironed out. For now, she is in London with her hubby and family. “We’re all in a situation now where we are figuring it out like we always do,” Eve said.” I’m excited, ’cause I don’t even know what’s happening yet. Because we have been on hiatus, we’ve kind of been checking in, but no one knows anything, so it’s gonna be huge. It always is — we do that very well.”


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