On November 5, 2023, Rolling Stone magazine published a profile on DJ Khaled with comments and insight from his peers in the industry. Among them is Fat Joe, who revealed that Eminem’s verse on the “Lean Back” remix traces back to motivation given from the Grammy-winning producer.
“When we did ‘Lean Back,’ we did it in a studio in Khaled’s house. I remember when it came to be remix time, I would’ve never thought I had a chance in the world of getting Eminem. Khaled told me, ‘You could get Em.’ And I went all out and I got Eminem because he had pushed me to.” recalled Fat Joe.
Back in 2005, with the original version of “Lean Back” topping the Billboard Hot 100 and achieving gold status, Terror Squad’s Fat Joe and Remy Ma returned with the crunk remix produced by Lil Jon and featuring verses from Eminem and Mase.
Back in 2011, during the interview with Complex magazine, Fat Joe spoke about Eminem’s verse: “Me and Eminem were cool before he even had a record deal. I wouldn’t dare ask him for a favor. DJ Khaled was gassing me and this is when he was a little ni–a in the crew. He kept telling me, ‘Get the whiteboy!’ I was like, ‘Nah, I ain’t gonna bother him.’ And he was like, ‘I’m telling you, that’s your man. He’ll do it!’
He continued: “So I went and I asked him. And he hit me back like, ‘Yo Joe, you know you got one favor. Is this it?’ Eminem actually rapped at first on the original. And he was asking me, ‘Yo, why did you change the beat?!?’ And he’s another ni–a like Nas on ‘John Blaze’ who sent me mad verses. He did like 10 ‘Lean Back’ verses. He’s a perfectionist. It was incredible already. I didn’t understand why he would keep sending other ones.”