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11 Amazing Facts About Eminem

Eminem isn’t just one of the best rappers working right now, he’s arguably one of the best rappers of all time. The man redefined rap in his early game and continued to do it as he evolved and matured. He changed how rap music was perceived by the mainstream and brought shock rap to the masses, while preaching some important messages.

1.His Different Names Represent Different Personas

He told Spin magazine, “Slim Shady is the name for my temper or Anger. Eminem is just the rapper, Slim Shady is the attitude behind him, and Marshall Mathers is who I am at the end of the day.”

2.He Has the Biggest Vocabulary on the Pop Charts

After looking at 93 top artists in over 25 genres of music, a study found that Eminem had the widest vocabulary. Coming in hot at a whopping 8,818 unique words used, Eminem topped Jay Z (6,899 unique words), Tupac (6,569 unique words), Kanye (5,069 unique words), and Bob Dylan (4,883 unique words). The study also looked for lyrical density and new word interval.

3.Elton John Is His Unofficial Sobriety Sponsor

Eminem told Rolling StoneI speak to Elton [John]. He’s like my sponsor. He usually calls me once a week to check on me, just to make sure I’m on the up-and-up. He was actually one of the first people I called when I wanted to get clean. He was hipping me to things, like, “You’re going to see nature that you never noticed before.” Shit you’d normally think was corny but that you haven’t seen in so long that you just go, “Wow! Look at that fucking rainbow!” Or even little things – trees, the color of leaves. I fucking love leaves now, man. I feel like I’ve been neglecting leaves for a long time.”

4.Before He Cut His First Album, He Made $5.50 an Hour

Back in 1992, Eminem signed with FBT records after years of barely scraping by, trying to make ends meet. For a time, he worked as a cook and a dishwasher at Gilbert’s Lodge, a small family restaurant in Michigan, making a mere $5.50 an hour.

Five days before Christmas, and soon after releasing Infinite in 1996, he was fired from the restaurant; it also happened to be his daughter’s birthday. He wrote “Rock Bottom” right after that.

5.He Squatted in His Old Apartment the Night Before He Was Discovered by Dre

Eminem experienced what every musician dreams of… happenstance discovery. He was at the LA Rap Olympics and was noticed by someone in the mailroom at Interscope, who then managed to get his mixtape to Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre. The two loved it (and mixtapes rarely ever turn into much).

What’s even crazier is that the night before, he had to break into his own place, from which he’d just been evicted. “I had to break in,” he says. “I didn’t have anywhere else to go. There was no heat, no water, no electricity. I slept on the floor, woke up, went to L.A. I was so pissed.”

6.His Best Friend’s Death Sent Him Into a Downward Spiral

Eminem’s best friend and fellow D12 member, Proof, was gunned down in a club in 2006 sending him into a rough downward spiral. Eminem always referred to Proof as his rock, someone reliable on whom he could always count. When he passed, he turned to drugs and drinking, hardly ever getting out of bed; he even gained around 80 pounds.

I got up to between 220 and 230, about 80 pounds heavier than I am now. I was going to McDonald’s and Taco Bell every day. The kids behind the counter knew me – it wouldn’t even faze them. Or I’d sit up at Denny’s or Big Boy and just eat by myself. It was sad. I got so heavy that people started to not recognize me. I remember being somewhere and overhearing these kids talking. One of them said, ‘That’s Eminem,’ and the other said, ‘No it’s not, man – Eminem ain’t fat.’ I was like, ‘Motherf*cker.’ That’s when I knew I was getting heavy.”

7.The Beastie Boys Were a Huge Inspiration to Him

On the subject of the Beastie Boys, Eminem said, “That’s what really did it for me. I was like, “This shit is so dope!” That’s when I decided I wanted to rap. I’d hang out on the corner where kids would be rhyming, and when I tried to get in there, I’d get dissed. A little color issue developed, and as I got old enough to hit the clubs, it got really bad. I wasn’t that dope yet, but I knew I could rhyme, so I’d get on the open mics and sh*t, and a couple of times I was booed off the stage.”

8.Eminem’s Mother Sued Him for $10 Million

The fall before the Slim Shady LP was released, his Mother, Debbie Mathers-Briggs, sued the rapper for $10 million citing a defamation of character (and to this day, claiming everything Eminem said on his records was untrue, and that he grew up in a drug free household). The court eventually settled on $250,000.

“How does it feel? It feels like $hit. How would you feel? One thing I can tell you is that every single word I said about my mother and my upbringing was true.”

9.The Director of Training Day Wanted Eminem for the Ethan Hawke Part

Before casting Ethan Hawke in the intense leading role in Training Day, Marshall Mathers was a probable contender for the role. After the success of 8 Mile (which showed his surprisingly great acting skills), he was was on a lot of directors’ radars. Things didn’t work out on that film but years later Fuqua directed Southpaw, a film loosely based on Eminem’s life (which he was years earlier in talks to star in as well).

10.He Doesn’t Know How to Use a Computer

Not only does he not know how to work a computer, he refuses to learn. “If I learn how to work a computer, I’m going to be on that b!tch all day looking at comments about me, and it’s going to drive me crazy.” His manager says anytime he reads a blog or a review it affects him for a long time.

11.Crazy Fans Forced Him to Sell His First Home

In 2002, he told MTV, “The first big-ticket item that I bought was a house. When I first started seeing money, I treated that like it was the only house I would ever buy and the only royalty check that I would ever get. That’s how I treat every [check]. The truth is, you don’t know what’s gonna happen tomorrow. This is a crazy ride and nothing is guaranteed. I could wake up tomorrow and this could all be over. You have to invest.”

At the time I bought it, I had no idea how famous I really was. It was across the street from a trailer park and we had kids coming across all day knocking on the door. We had a pool in the backyard, kids were jumping in the pool. It was crazy. The house was on a main road so we had people whipping in my driveway like, “Em, what up?” I literally couldn’t go outside my house. So we deaded that real quick, sold the house, lost money and bought a new house. That’s probably the best investment I’ve made, my new house.”

He now lives in the above home, purchased in 2003. It was previously owned by the former CEO of K-Mart.