Jay-Z Explains Exactly Why DMX Was An Impossible Act To Follow As A Live Performer

In the wake of the late DMX’s tragic, untimely death, his fans and peers have been sharing their memories and stories that reveal just what made him such a formidable force in the hip-hop world. Who better to testify to X’s power as a live performer than one of the best and most influential New York rappers in the game, Jay-Z. As the clip below shows, in a recent episode of LeBron James’ show, The Shop on HBO, even Jay-Z found X a tough act to follow. Just as he showed his fallibility in a recent episode by admitting he sometimes forgets his own lyrics, Jay let James and crew know that following up a DMX set was no easy feat.

“X is about to go on, and I’m like, you know, I wanna see,” he begins. “X is going before me. And then he goes (growls), and the f*cking arena goes crazy. First of all, it’s deafening… and I’m like oh sh*t.” Jay goes on to explain the other elements of X’s set that get the crowd hype, including ripping his shirt off halfway through his set, and then, of course, leading the entire crowd in prayer as a closing act. Then, after all that, it’s time for Jay-Z to take the stage — a tough act to follow indeed. Check out his retelling of the set above, it showcases exactly why Jay is such a successful figure in pop culture in the first place, he’s a great storyteller. And if you’re craving more DMX, check out the posthumous Exodus album his label released this past Friday.