Will Smith, while promoting his new movie ‘Bad Boys: Ride or Die,’ got the surprise of a lifetime during an interview with Sway on SiriusXM.

While discussing his admiration for Grandmaster Caz, Smith shared how the hip-hop legend influenced his rap style. “The way that I rap was based on Grandmaster Caz’s ‘Yvette.’ The Fresh Prince, the character—everything was centered on Grandmaster Caz’s verse on ‘Yvette.’ I was like, ‘I want to rap like that.'”

Mid-interview, as Smith passionately recited a verse from the 1985 track, Caz quietly entered the room, catching Smith off guard. The moment Smith turned around, he erupted in shock and excitement, immediately embracing his idol.

Introducing Grandmaster Caz to the room, Smith beamed, “Ladies and gentlemen, the full, complete, and total inspiration for the Fresh Prince, Grandmaster Caz.” This heartfelt interaction highlighted the deep impact Caz had on Smith’s career.

Smith’s admiration for rap icons doesn’t stop at Grandmaster Caz. Last year, during ‘A Grammy Salute to 50 Years of Hip Hop’ TV special, Smith confessed that he mimicked Rakim’s flow for his 1991 hit “Summertime” with DJ Jazzy Jeff. He explained that he had been struggling with his voice that night, and the producer suggested, “Yo, just gimme that Rakim shit.”

Although many fans long believed Rakim penned Smith’s verses for ‘Summertime,’ Rakim clarified in a 2016 interview with HipHopDX that while he and Eric B. originally sampled the beat, they never wrote Smith’s lyrics. “It was ironic that me and Eric B. had sampled it, and we had it ready to go,” Rakim said. “But when [DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince] came out with it, a lot of people thought it was me because of the style he used. But it was one of those things where that was them. I didn’t write it. That was Will and Jeff.”

Rakim noted that the beat, which samples ‘Summer Madness’ by Kool & The Gang, didn’t quite suit his signature baritone. “It was something he had on the backburner,” he added. Despite the initial confusion, Rakim appreciated the track’s success and acknowledged its hit potential, though it wasn’t the right fit for his debut album.

Will Smith’s genuine excitement upon meeting his idol Grandmaster Caz serves as a nostalgic reminder of the influences that shape artists. This encounter not only shed light on Smith’s hip-hop roots but also celebrated the legends who paved the way.

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