Mark Wahlberg Says His Former Record Label Wanted Him To Be Like Eminem

Rapper-turned-actor said he didn’t want to disrespect his mother.

Mark Wahlberg is widely known as a blockbuster actor but before movies such as Transformers, TED 2 and Patriots Day, Wahlberg was a rapper with Marky Mark & the Funky Bunch. As the Hip-Hop 50 celebrations continue, the Boston native talked a little about his career as Marky Mark.

“I think I could have been a lot more successful had I been allowed to do what I wanted to do,” he said according to “I think the record company had one specific idea, and they wanted to go for that.”

At the time, Wahlberg had just gotten out of jail and his older brother Donnie was in the chart-topping group New Kids On The Block.

“I wanted to make a record,” he said. “I saw my brother making millions of dollars and I’m still struggling, so I kind of compromised a little bit.”

Things were good for him for awhile. Marky Mark & the Funky Bunch went No. 1 on Billboard with their hit song “Good Vibrations” in 1991.

“They continued to push me further in the opposite direction, that’s when I decided not to make another record and to wait out my contract.”

He also felt as though people tried aligning him with other white rappers, but he was on a different path.

“Could I have been Eminem?” he said. “I certainly hope not. I like Eminem, I think Eminem’s really talented, but I’m trying to go a completely different route.”

But the label wanted him to attack people and say crazy things about people in his family, similar to the way Eminem did addressing his mom and child’s mother—he wasn’t into it.

“No, no. I love my mother, man,” he said. “Are you crazy? No, I can’t be a bad influence on anybody. But I think there’s a lot more to what he does than that. There’s certainly a shock value that’s kind of gotten him to a certain place, but the guy’s got a lot of talent.”

As someone who really grew up in tough circumstances, he didn’t want his music to reflect any of that.

“It’s just, you know, I came from the real thing and I was trying desperately to get away from that,” he said. “I’m trying to work as hard as possible to be the best person I can be, to everybody.”