During their wide-ranging interview with Trevor Noah on Tuesday’s Daily Show, Run the Jewels discussed their continued support of Bernie Sanders, their Grammy “snub” for 2014’s Run the Jewels 2 and the charitable stupidity of their “Meow the Jewels” project.
El-P explained that he and Killer Mike formed their collaboration to circumvent a collapsing music industry and release albums on their own terms. “We kind of did the first record just as a ‘thank you’ to our fans,” he said. “We were really thankful that we had our solo careers. We had been working together, and we didn’t wanna go through everything. We didn’t wanna look at the first week’s sales. We didn’t want to compete … We just didn’t want to play the game.”
Explaining how they balance “woke” lyrics with a “real hip-hop” attack, the duo offered a simple answer: “Weed, marijuana,” El-P said. “Lots of it,” added Killer Mike. “Lots, lots, lots. Lots of marijuana.” From there, Mike used marijuana legislation to segue into their support of Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, whom the group repped throughout his presidential campaign.
“[Sanders] talked about decriminalizing marijuana, taking it off the Schedule I list, which is something I thought our former president should have done,” the rapper said. “I think it’s time for one of these presidents to be brave enough to de-schedule something that only got up there because of a racist law in 1937.”
After a dumbfounded Noah inquired about “Meow the Jewels,” El-P detailed how the project began as a stoned joke for the packaging of Run the Jewels 2 but evolved into a charitable endeavor. Noah then asked if they felt “snubbed” from the Grammys for RTJ2.
“Absolutely,” Mike said. “We feel good about the third one,” El-P added. “We’re gonna do this.”