Eminem: 50 Greatest Songs

The best from the bloody, bombastic, brilliant career of the hip-hop troublemaker

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16. "Marshall Mathers" (2000)

The song carrying Eminem's birth name reveals the man behind all the personas as he struggles with paranoia and disgust for everyone who is now monitoring his every post-fame move. He petulantly jabs at bubblegum pop, boy bands and fellow Detroit pottymouths the Insane Clown Posse. "I felt that what I needed to talk about in the verses was just me and my opinions," wrote Eminem in Angry Blonde. "So I touched on everything from the newest trends in hip hop (which I'm not really with), to ICP, to my mother, to my family members who don't know me and always wanna come around. I wanted to just spit fire in each verse and have the soft-ass innocent chorus." He did, in what came to be the mid-period Eminem style, entrancing millions with his passion and skill, while likely alienating others with his casual slurs.

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