No games are being played with Dancehall artiste and music producer Serani, as the Kingston native has received what has been described as a favorable payout from American rapper Eminem, after granting permission to him to use lines from his 2008 hit “No Games” on his track Farewell.
“Farewell” is the seventeenth track on Eminem’s recently-released Music to be Murdered By album. The song uses Serani’s voice as the intro and outro, with the outro lasting for 22 seconds with lines from the first stanza of “No Games.” The intro uses the same verse with Serani’s voice but lasts for nine seconds.
Serani told The Star tabloid that he was honored to have his music sampled by Eminem, whom he regards as “one of the best lyricists music has ever produced” and a “master of his craft.” He said as a consequence when Eminem chose to sample what has been his biggest song, it was evident to him that the rapper and his associates have a high level of respect for his music.
He said that as a producer himself, he always thought the rapper was smart with the beats he chose to use and, in addition, always had catchy hooks. The 37-year-old who has been one of the masterminds behind the production of Dancehall hits such as Elephant Man’s “Willie Bounce” Sean Paul’s “We be Burnin” and Tony Matterhorn’s “Dutty Wine,” also told the tabloid that the Eminem deal is testament that despite him not having a presence in Jamaica at the moment, he is still working hard, and expects that this year everyone will see the fruits of his labor.
According to The Star, Serani’s manager Julian Jones Griffith declined to tell how much money Eminem paid but insisted that the compensation was sufficient. He said a third-party clearance agency had contacted him about Eminem’s request to sample No Games some time ago and that after listening to the use of the sample and the full song on the telephone, he and Serani “came to a very favorable decision in regard to the publishing splits on the track.”
Griffith said he and Serani, whose real name is Craig Serani Marsh, co-own the No Games master and that as a consequence, Eminem had to present a deal for consideration on both on the master side and publishing side.
According to him, there have been many offers to use “No Games,” any of which have been declined, as he and Serani want to “keep the prestige and value of the record,” but noted that with Eminem, it was a perfect business decision.
“No Games” was released on the Unfinished Business rhythm, which was an update of the Showtime beat, which was produced by veteran music producer Dave Kelly in 1997.