His listeners can tell: Eminem gets very personal in each of his albums. Eminem invites you into his privacy. He allows you to have a look at his life and describes it the way it actually is. Persons who are part of his life like Debbie, Kim, Hailie or Nathan become part of our universe in no time.
That’s exactly where the danger lies: because Eminem dares saying something about Debbie, for instance, on a record, some of his listeners think they are allowed to hate her like Marshall does in his songs.
First of all, those kind of listeners seem to forget an important detail: it often happens that Marshall writes a song at the very moment he is pissed off.
Second, even if it is not the case, Eminem never allowed you to insult the family members he doesn’t like. That’s called respect.
Matter of fact: we listeners don’t know them personally. We don’t even know the details of the griefs that oppose Marshall to his family members. It is more than obvious that we should take some distance with the artist’s statements.
One of my readers from Gavinsblog, for instance, seemed very surprised to know that Eminem had sent a card to Debbie for Mother’s Day, and also that Marshall was still in touch with his mom.
It is a well known and undeniable fact that Marshall has some serious problems with his mom. Those issues are fully exposed in his music.
But the listener needs to have a sense of reality: deep inside of his heart, Marshall must love his mom, whatever may have happened between the two of them.
He also knows that she is gravely ill and he is probably secretly trying to work out their problems.
Again, the listener has no right to judge something that is-after all- none of his business.
Some people also will never get why Eminem dissed and « killed » Kim in his songs and why he now claims that he can’t live without her. The answer: that’s what we should call a passion.
Even if Eminem has been angry against Kim, that doesn’t mean he doesn’t love her.
Matter of fact: he has always forgiven her in real life.
Another obvious reason why Eminem often gets misquoted: it happens that the readers of his lyrics have a very superficial view of the artist’s biography and work. Some of them happen to be totally deprived of a sense of humor and often take each of his statements too literally. Lynne Cheney is one of them.
I admit that approaching Eminem’s oeuvre ain’t simple. But the complexity of his work also make its beauty. Take a look at Marshall Mathers’ work without stereotyping it. Also try to understand that if Marshall shares his life with you , he also wants you to show some respect to the family members you don’t know.
You doubt me? Then take it from Marshall’s mouth:
« Just because I talk about my daughter and put her in my songs, or I say something about Kim in my songs, doesn’t give you the right or nobody else to talk about ’em and feel free to do so. »
Never confuse hip hop with real life. Although the details expressed in Eminem’s song refer to real events, remember that you are just a spectator.