Run the Jewels are among the artists recruited to perform at Banksy’s new Dismaland art exhibit/theme park, and before Killer Mike and El-P visit the artist’s latest creation on September 4th, the rap duo chatted with Banksy for The Guardian. The interview’s topics range from Kanye West to crying to YouTube videos to whether it’s better to be remembered as a great artist or a nice person.
The street artist mentions that Kanye West headlined Glastonbury – “a dairy farm,” as Banksy calls it – and declared himself the world’s biggest rock star. While El-P agreed with West’s boast, Killer Mike said, “Kanye is amazing and may be the greatest rock star in the world but Rihanna is the new Tupac (in feminist form), and as much as I love rock, ain’t nobody do it like Pac! Ri-Ri rules in my book.”
Banksy reveals to Killer Mike that watching the rapper’s impassioned Michael Brown speech in St. Louis made him cry, and the artist then asks Run the Jewels if a YouTube video has ever moved them to tears. Killer Mike admits he was overwhelmed by a speech Dr. John Henrik Clarke gave on Marcus Garvey, while El-P “wept like a baby” from that viral video about a reunion between a lion and his ex-trainers.
As for whether he’d rather be remembered as a nice person or a great artist, Killer Mike said, “I cannot lie: as good as it feels to get my deserved props, the best part of reading social media after I meet folks is reading: ‘Mike was a nice guy.’ I believe being honorable lasts longer than rapping good.”
El-P also praised Banksy and other street artists by saying, “The bravest artists I’ve ever known have always been [graffiti] artists. Risking your life and your freedom is no joke. Whoever made Mount Rushmore was probably brave as well, assuming that rock-climbing equipment was not at its zenith at the time.”
In addition to Run the Jewels, Massive Attack, Kate Tempest, Savages and Pussy Riot will also perform at Dismaland in Somerset, England’s Weston-super-Mare in September. The exhibit itself runs through September 27th.