Coming from humble beginnings the Detroit-based rapper Marshall Mathers, better known by the stage name Eminem, has had to fight all kinds of prejudice for the accolades he’s received. His first album, while praised for its lyrical content, was a commercial and critical failure. He followed it up with the “Slim Shady EP”, where he poured all of his pent-up frustrations with the Hip Hop industry and the perceived inadequacies of a “white-boy” rapping. It was the character he created, Slim Shady, that would propel him to stardom. Excessively violent and darkly comedic, his irreverent take on the grotesque won him fans the world over. So what is he up to these days?
Eminem’s Early Life
Eminem was born on October 17th, 1972 in St Joseph, Missouri. His father left the family while he was still an infant, and would subsequently rebuff all attempts at contact that Eminem proffered. He was raised by his mother, Deborah Mathers. His childhood was as turbulent as you would expect. His family would move constantly and his mother had a hard time holding down a job. He attended multiple schools per year and this sense of being an outsider would impact the young Eminem’s personality. He had no close friends and was bullied almost constantly, once getting severely hurt by a boy name De’Angelo Bailey. He would later name him in the song “Brain Damage” off the “Slim Shady LP”.
The last school he attended was Lincoln High School in Warren, Michigan where he failed the ninth grade three times and eventually dropped out at seventeen. Though he had, even then, a tremendous grasp of the English language he was indifferent to almost all other aspects of schoolwork. He wanted to be a comic book writer. Using his passion for languages he found an outlet in rap. He identified with the nihilistic rage of early nineties rap, he cites N.W.A. as an early influence on his style.
He started rapping at fourteen and was soon sneaking into the nearby Osborn High School to participate in lunchroom freestyle rap battles with friend and rapper Proof. He struggled to gain recognition in a predominantly black industry but was able to achieve some level of respect within the Detroit underground scene.
Eminem’s Early Success
He joined various rap groups in the early nineties, there’s that N.W.A. influence again. It was after “Soul Intent” disbanded that he teamed up with Proof to form D-12. A six-man ensemble that began performing regularly. He was arrested for the first time at twenty for participating in a drive-by shooting, with a paintball gun. The case was thrown out when the victim didn’t show up to court.
He signed on to FGT Productions to record his début album, “Infinite”. The lyrical content of the album was nothing like what was to come, focusing on his difficulties raising his daughter. The album was very radio friendly but failed to get much airtime on Detroit radio stations. The album’s failure, coupled with his addiction and monetary problems, lead to a suicide attempt. Fundamentally though it was clear that he had yet to develop his own voice, a style to call his own.
After the lackluster reception to “Infinite”, Eminem channeled his anger into the character of Slim Shady. He served as the focal point of Eminem’s frustrations with his perceived inadequacies, with every rhyme he wrote getting angrier and angrier. We ended up with a wonderfully over the top portrayal of a violent sadist. Eminem put a voice to the kid inside all of us that wants to go primal and tear the face of the haters, the people who put you down, while also touching on more serious themes of poverty and familial difficulties. He was evicted from his home shortly after the release of the EP and decided to go to Los Angeles for the Rap Olympics.
He placed second in the competition and staff from Interscope records who were present sent a copy of “The Slim Shady EP” to company CEO Jimmy Iovine who showed it to Dr Dre, who is a fellow rapper and founder of Aftermath Entertainment. Dre had never heard anything worthwhile from an EP or mix-tape in his career but upon hearing Eminem’s he recalls saying simply “Find Him. Now”. though Dre was initially criticized for hiring a white rapper he was confident in his decision.
Eminem’s Mainstream Success
In 1999, after two years of working together, the pair released “The Slim Shady LP”. The record was hotly anticipated and an instant success. The lead single “My Name is” featured an unusual blend of childish humor, explicit lyrics and a smattering of violence, an almost unique thing in rap at the time. It felt fresh, it felt polished and the public ate it up. Eminem went from an unknown to an internationally famous rapper almost overnight.
He was criticized for his lyrical content, parent groups began blaming him for corrupting their children, even though the record wasn’t targeted to them. In the September after the release of the album his mother sued him for slander. It was settled out of court but she would later sue again for the emotional damages she suffered at the first trial, it was thrown out of court.
Following the successful quadruple platinum album, Eminem released the “Marshall Mather’s LP” in May of 2000. It sold 1,760,000 copies in its first week of sales. Surpassing the record set by Snoop Dogg’s “Doggystyle” for the fastest-selling hip-hop album. The album was only half produced by Dre this time and you can really hear the differences in style. Half the songs have Dre-esque backbeats with lyrics spit over the top and the other half the songs are meticulously crafted and lyric driven. Dre would continue to serve Eminem as a producer on all of his releases but it was clear who was now in control of the records.
His next release would be 2002’s ” The Eminem Show” which was another success, reaching number one in nineteen countries including the US. Eminem would tour during this period with a plethora of artists such as Snoop Dogg, Limp Bizkit, Papa Roach, Ludacris, Ice Cube, and Xzibit.
He made his feature film début in 2002 with the semi-autobiographical “8 Mile”. The film is an account of a white rapper trying to launch a rap career in Detroit, Michigan. The film was well received by critics, likening it to “Rocky” but with rappers. Eminem would win an Oscar for Best Original Song in “Lose Yourself”. He was the first rapper to win the award, though several have won since.
In 2004 Eminem released “Encore”. The lead single “Just Lose it” sparked controversy due to its portrayal of singer Michael Jackson, parodying his plastic surgery, alleged child sexual abuse and the Pepsi commercial where his hair caught fire. Though in his defense the song also has a self-deprecating tone, regarding his film 8-Mile and general rapping tropes. He would apologize for the offense he caused in an interview in Germany, citing the utmost respect he has for Jackson’s work.
He took a break from releases after “Encore”. It was speculated in 2005 that Eminem was quitting the business altogether, though this would ultimately prove untrue. He spent the time between “Encore” and “Relapse” sorting through personal issues, he re-married and re-divorced ex-wife Kim Scott in 2006. However, in a 2009 radio interview, he claimed that he was still recording, but did not know if he would release another record. Too soon a statement made maybe? He released “Relapse” in mid-2009. It was one of the top albums that year, and so far has sold more than five million copies.
Originally Eminem was working on a direct sequel album to “Relapse” under the working title of “Relapse II”. But as it progressed he found himself moving further and further away stylistically from his previous effort. So he re-titled the record “Recovery” and released it in 2010. Eminem said at the time;
” I had originally planned for Relapse 2 to come out last year. But as I kept recording with new producers, the idea of a sequel to Relapse started to make less and less sense to me, and I wanted to make a completely new album. The music on Recovery came out very different from Relapse, and I think it deserves its own title.”
Eminem would eventually release a sequel record, though not for “Relapse”. “The Marshall Mathers LP 2” was released in 2013. Showcasing a wide variety of technical rapping skills the album saw strong sales and positive reviews from the critics. The record features numerous callbacks to the first whilst highlighting new issues that Eminem has had to deal with due to his fame and status.
What is Eminem Doing Now? 2023 Update
In January 2020, the rapper released a surprise album titled, Music to be Murdered By. His eleventh studio album, it debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200 chart and featured guest appearances from White Gold, Juice WRLD, Ed Sheeran, Young M.A., Don Toliver, among other artists. Some songs from the tracklist include Those Kinda Nights, Leaving Heaven, Lock It Up, In Too Deep, You Got’ Learn, and Little Engine. With its release, he also became the first artist to have ten consecutive albums debut at number one in the United States.
A deluxe edition of the album was later released on December 18, 2020, and like the original album, it came without any prior announcement. Titled Music to Be Murdered By – Side B, it included a bonus disc that featured 16 new tracks including Black Magic, Book of Rhymes, Guns Blazing, Thus Far, She Loves Me, and These Demons. It also featured a few guest appearances by Dr. Dre, White Gold, DJ Premier, Solar Grey, MAJ, and Ty Dolla $ign.
He also collaborated with Kid Cudi’s daughter Vada on a song called ‘The Adventures of Moon Man & Slim Shady’, which was released on July 10, 2020. In the United States, it peaked at number 22 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart; it also charted in several other countries including Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and Ireland.
Fast forward to 2021, and it was announced that he’d be recording a song with Mozzy and Polo G called ‘Last One Standing for the movie, Venom: Let There Be Carnage. He also performed alongside LL Cool J at the 2021 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Ceremony.
More recently, he performed at the Super Bowl LVI halftime show on February 13, 2022, alongside Mary J. Blige, Kendrick Lamar, Dr. Dre, and Snoop Dog. He was also inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. That’s not all, he also made a small television appearance in the documentary The DOC and was invited to speak in an episode of the podcast PlayITS@.
As far as concerts go, it doesn’t look like he has anything planned for 2022. In fact, he hasn’t performed live on stage since 2019 (his last performance was at the Du Arena in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates).
For those who’d like to keep up with what he’s up to, consider following him on social media. He’s active on Instagram (@eminem) where he has over 35.8m followers and on Twitter (@eminem), where he has over 22.6m followers.
dude. he did NOT FELL OF ! Phenomenal has the probability to get an oscar next year….. so… eminem is still in this something. #RapGod
His last albus was in 2013,not 2014.
Shady xv was just something eminem put out to celebrate 15 years of his career. It wasnt a proper album.
To say that he “fell off” is just wrong. And funny. The success eminem had will probably never be matched, he was the best selling artist of 2000-2010. Best selling ARTIST, not rap artist.
Since then eminem really doesnt care, hes already one of the very very best do ever do it. Hes already a LEGEND.
How many times do you see eminem makr public appearences? Even when he released his album in 2013, eminem bbarely goes to tv shows for interviews.
Thats becauze he doesnt want to, hes not an attention seeking wanna-be like kanye west. And all the other hoes like iggy azalea, wiz halifa etc etc
And guess what, even without barely making any public appearences, when he releases his next Album it probably guranteed that it will be the best selling album of that year or if not come very close.
To say he “fell off” is just innacurate. A more accuarate explanaition would be that he achieved more than any other rapper will likely achieve and now he wants to relax and enjoy his life. And even by isolating himself from ALL media when he puts out a full lp album its very likely to be the number 1 album of that year.
South Paw Soundtrack was his last album. He produced the whole cd.
That’s not his album dummy that’s a soundtrack he produced and you saying young thug is the prince of rap just makes your opinion irrelevant
U don’t see him making appearances because he’s on drugs!!!!! They ate gonna keep that a secret because of the color of his skin. U honestly think as famous as he is he’s managing to stay ospot light? There are only two eeason reasons why u wouldn’t be in the spot light being famous while white and they are u either are on drugs or u r married to a person of color. Ijs
Somehow this comment was dumber than the one who said Eminem isn’t an artist. He made an entire album about coming back from drugs. Do you really think he would just jump back into drugs? Nice grammar.
Dude find someone else to write about. Your not even a fan of rap. You know like 5 eminem songs, watched a documentary, and asked a few old people on the street who the best rapper is, and you think your an expert. It’s Eminem you dumb ###. He is the best selling rapper of all time. Survival was that song that’s like OMG Eminem is the best and he is only getting better. MARSHALL MATHERS LP2 made him the G.O.A.T. not just in rap, but the greatest musician of all time. He is king in the business and soon he will be the richest. Its not about the money and #1s It’s about Marshall. We love him we are his fans that know his chances were slim of being the greatest. He got there because He is chosen. ShadyXV is underrated and I was sceptic. I thought he made so much progress from relapse to get to MMLP2 that I was hoping for more optimism but the album was great! Lets Roll, Psychopath, Las Vegas, Guts over Fear, Twisted, Phenomenal. All the songs are amazing and I think ShadyXV is his best album, and the Phenomenal video is great. At the end when he picks up the mic, that is when Marshall Mathers answers that call.
You’re dic*riding too much with the greatest musician of all time part. I would’ve supported u until I read that dumb sh*t. You’re saying he’s better than Michael Jackson, Elvis, and Drake? No. Drake is the King of rap and Young Thug is the prince. Eminem is the duke! Then Big and PAC.
Okay Michael Jackson was amazing. I would rate him higher than Big and PAC. Elvis was better than Michael. Eminem is still #1. #2 and #3 isn’t even Drake, it’s Taylor Swift and Katy Perry. Michael Jackson was like a white Michelle Jackson. You don’t even understand Mozart and Beethoven ain’t got stuff on Eminem.
I just realized you called “Shady XV” his best album. Now you’re just trolling. That album was so bad it actually pissed people off. They bought that album hoping it was a new Eminem album and he was like on only 4-5 songs. How could that be his best album? That right there was the dumbest sh*t I’ve read yet.
Shady XV has a lot of new songs. 1 CD has some of his greatest hits with D12, and he has a lot of 50 cent on there and a few tracks by Yelawolf. The other CD has new music and it’s phenomenal.
(1. Die Alone
(2. Fine Line
(3. Guts Over Fear
(4. Detroit vs Everybody
(5. Psychopath Killer
(6. Shady XV
(8. Las Vegas
I liked MMLP2, it has lots of great songs like Berserk, Survival, Monster, and Rap God, but these 8 songs listed along with the rest of Shady XV is my favorite. Especially because of Las Vegas, Psychopath Killer, and Twisted.
“Mozart and Beethoven ain’t got stuff on Eminem” – Bruh, I’m a huge Em fan, but that has to be one of the most absurdly ignorant-assed comments I’ve ever read. ALL of the stinky -ass popular music and hip-hop that you enjoy owes it’s respective existence to the great innovators of music history. As amazing a poet and wordsmith as he is, Eminem is NOT a virtuoso musician. That involves a deep understanding of Harmony, Melody and Rhythm, in addition to having to display virtuosic mastery on a musical instrument. He definitely has the rhythm down, no question! But the other components? Not so much.
I’m not saying that Eminem is responsible for every good song that comes out, but he is the G.O.A.T. When it comes to being a musician.
Drake is the king of pop… King of rap.. lol, the f you say?
This guy lol I don’t even refer to drake as anything. Tbh
Your an idiot sorry just saying.
Eminem has been my fan since the day I listened to I’m Not Afraid…i think its 16 years from day one now…
He’s really doing good!!!
bro do u even hip hop bro? MARYLIN MANSION is the best rapper alive! you cant beat his 50 cent debute with international records, wrecking the game in 2000…so dumb i swear
Look whenever he is on a hiatus from making an official album (not.including sideprojects) something big always comes so probably another d12 album or bad meets evil
The article sed he fell off and doesn’t get any songs on radio. Lol even when he was at his best like mmlp and tes radios still wouldn’t play his music coz it was too explicit. A few songs would play but really not many. And no drake is not better than Eminem. Drake sold out and fell off way to quick he wasn’t that great to begin with but now he just worse
All Eminem has to do is say he has a new album on the way and he is back to being the talking point until release date. 50 cent said it himself. Eminem does not have to promote his albums. He goes away people wonder where he is and then he comes back and he is number one again and the only other person who could do that was Michael Jackson, Eminem is one of the biggest artists in the world and that’s not me over exaggerating or being a fan boy that’s just how it is. The article is in some ways ridiculous to read, you honestly think Wiz Khalifa and Fetty Wop have taken the spotlight? They have to release music and be in the spotlight to actually stay relevant for there careers. Eminem sells consistently in this era of musical sales 5 million a time and has stood the test of time which is why he isn’t affected by needing to be in the media consistently…The same goes for Jay Z, Kanye West and Dre.
Eminem is one of the biggest HIP HOP/RAP artists in the world, I hope you meant to say?
There is absolutely no way in which you can compare Jackson with Marshal. And then again, Jackson? Really? So you judge how artisticaly valid an artist is by their sales? Stupid. So stupid my heart hurs.
There is no “art” in rap or hip hop, none at all. It’s all in your face. So obvious. Eminem is the best when it comes to rapping and rhyming a story. Nobody else can do that. But it has nothing to do with art. So don’t tag Eminem as an artist. Not everything that’s related to music is art.
Eminem is no.1 in this game simply because he was brought up by controversy.
dude, Eminem, wether u like it or not is an artist. if rap isn’t an art, u try to rap.
You talk about the person you replied to as stupid–“So stupid my heart hurs.” Then you go on to say “There is no ‘art’ in rap or hip hop, none at all.” You, sir, are the stupid one. You do realize that when you rap, when you rhyme, that’s pretty much poetry? I’m talking about the old school kind of rapping, not the nowadays that does not make sense type of rapping. What do you think poetry is? Well, poetry is art in literature form. You might want to learn about that before calling someone stupid.
You’re right about poetry being, and rap.. or RaP, actually stands for Rhythm and Poetry. So yes, rap IS art.
lol i couldnt agree more madam (laughy face)(btw i come from the future)
What an idiot saying rap is not art. I guess he forgot to listen in class. Because he would have learned that Rap was the most Artistic thing in 1960 and it still is today. He thinks that rap is obvious but i bet money he doesn’t know the true meaning of Eminems’ songs. And the thing about Micheal Jackson and Eminem being the same artistic wise is up to perspective. I personally think that Micheal Jackson is stuff when it comes to his music. Especially when he it is alleged that he stole over 72% of the songs he “wrote” And the ting about controversy is the same with Micheal. He went through a lot and also gained success by controversy. Im not saying that was the only reason but that was a main factor. Eminem was brought up by his intricate and unique rhyming scheme that nobody tried before he did and the the controversy came in after. Research before your post.
PS. I am not a fan of Eminem. I just don’t like it when people say things that are inaccurate. Everybody is entitled to an opinion but if you are going to say that rap is not artistic have facts to support it.
lol dat so true tale me moor about yur opinion…(laughy face)
That title is clickbait, I came to see what em is doing in 2016, not read his biography!
His biography is 2016, duh.
I’ve been listening since i was 4 one verse and i was Hooked hes my role model
I see a lot of typos very unprofessional, and this is the worst click bait of them all
i came to find out how old he is….didnt find out jack
He was born in 1oct. 17 1972 do the rest of the math
He might have just fallen back into his old habits, he’s been gone for more than a year
will he back in 2017
he is a awesome guy
yeah what Slim down there said!
Obviously I’m a little late but, You know what? This is ClickBait, Clearly if you didn’t see there are so many mistakes in the article.
lol im even later