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Eminem, Kid Rock to Celebrate Def Jam at VH1 Hip Hop Honors

September 2, 2009 2:51 PM ET

Eminem, the Roots, Method Man, Mary J. Blige, Kid Rock, Young Jeezy, Public Enemy and many more will all be on hand when the VH1 Hip Hop Honors pays tribute to the 25th anniversary of Def Jam Records on October 13th. 30 Rock star Tracy Morgan will host the festivities for the third straight year, with Chris Rock and Jimmy Fallon both booked to present at the show. Hip Hop Honors will be filmed at Brooklyn's Academy of Music Opera House.

Other artists who will help pay tribute to the label and its architects Rick Rubin, Russell Simmons, Lyor Cohen, Jay-Z and Antonio "L.A." Reid include Rick Ross, Fabolous, Ludacris, DMX, Onyx, Ja Rule, the Gym Class Heroes, Warren G, Trey Songz and Scarface. All in all, that is one incredible roster to celebrate one incredible record label. All the artists involved will dig deep into the Def Jam catalog for their performances, a discography that features genre-changing albums by LL Cool J, Jay-Z, Public Enemy, Ghostface Killah and more.

The special will also include never-before-seen interviews and archival footage from Def Jam's past. Rick Rubin started Def Jam Records in his dorm room back in 1984, eventually teaming up with Russell Simmons to pave the way for the Def Jam we know today. Past Hip Hop Honors have paid tribute to Wu-Tang Clan, Tupac Shakur, Notorious B.I.G., the Beasties Boys, Ice Cube, Snoop Dogg and a pair of Rock & Roll Hall of Famers, Run-DMC and Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five.

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Song Stories

“Money For Nothing”

Dire Straits | 1984

Mark Knopfler wrote this song with Sting, and it wasn’t without controversy. The Dire Straits frontman's original lyric used the word “faggot” to describe a singer who got their “money for nothing and their chicks for free.” Even though the slur was edited out in many versions, the band, and Knopfler, still took plenty of criticism for the term. “I got an objection from the editor of a gay newspaper in London--he actually said it was below the belt,” Knopfler told Rolling Stone. Still, "Money For Nothing," undoubtedly augmented by its innovative early computer-animated video, stayed at Number One for three weeks.

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