|The Slim Shady LP|
|Studio album by Eminem|
|Released||February 23, 1999|
Studio 8, Ferndale, Michigan
|Label||Aftermath, Interscope, Web|
|Producer||Dr. Dre (exec.), Eminem, Mark & Jeff Bass (exec.), Mel-Man|
The Slim Shady LP is the second and first major label studio album by American hip hop artist Eminem that was released on February 23, 1999 under Interscope Records subsidiary Aftermath Entertainment. The album was produced by Dr. Dre, The Bass Brothers, Mel-Man and Eminem himself and was recorded during 1997 and 1998 at Studio 8 in Ferndale, Michigan. The majority of the lyrical content on the album is written in the prospective of the rapper's alter ego Slim Shady and is noted for its over-the-top deceptions of violence and heavy use of profanity.
The Slim Shady LP was a critical and commercial success, launching Eminem from a unknown rapper to a high-profiled celebrity, the album sold 283,000 copies in it's first week, debuted at number 2 on the Billboard 200 and went on to be certified quadruple-platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America. The album won a Grammy for Best Rap Album and was ranked number 273 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.
Prior to Eminem signing to Aftermath Entertainment, the rapper released his debut album, Infinite, in 1996 to very poor sales, he was also suffering of a alcohol and drug addiction which led him to an unsuccessful suicide attempted. To find a away to cope with the disappointment sales of Infinite, the rapper created the alter ego, Slim Shady, which was much angrier and violent, he introduced the character on The Slim Shady EP.
Eminem flew to Los Angeles to be apart of a rap competition named Rap Olympics in which he placed second, a staff of Intercope Records; CEO Jimmy Iovine was in the audience and was given a copy of The Slim Shady EP and played it for Aftermath Entertainment founder Dr. Dre. Eminem was signed to Aftermath and began working on the album.
Recording for the album began in 1997, at first, Eminem felt nervous working with Dr. Dre, he said; "I didn't want to be starstruck or kiss his ass too much ... I'm just a little white boy from Detroit. I had never seen stars, let alone Dr. Dre." recording initially began with Dr. Dre creating a beat and Eminem free-styling, sometimes Eminem would be under the influence of ecstasy during recording. A lot of the songs on the album were from The Slim Shady EP including "I Just Don't Give a Fuck" and "97' Bonnie & Clyde" (which is titled "Just the Two of Us" on the EP.) in the first week, "My Name Is" was written, recorded and was released as a single.
The production was primarily done by Dr. Dre, The Bass Brothers and Eminem. Many of the beats has been compared to the g-funk style of Dr. Dre's albums and includes sampling of several different songs. The lead single "My Name Is" contains a sample of Labi Siffre's "I Got The" and features psychedelic-style instrumentals and a funk bassline. Eminem's vocal delivery has been described as a "nasal whine".
The lyrical content was written in the prospective of Eminem's alter ego, Slim Shady which makes references to violence, other lyrics has been claimed to be misogynistic which was one of the main controversies, the song "Guilty Conscience" which Dr. Dre as a guest rapper, serves both Dre and Eminem as a "devil" and "angel" in different situations, other lyrical themes include Eminem's real-life problems, with the song "Rock Bottom" talks about the rapper's trouble with money
In it's first week, The Slim Shady LP sold 283,000 copies and debuted at number 2 on the Billboard 200 and remained their for 100 weeks. Ten days after the release, the album was certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America and was later sold quadruple platinum. The lead single "My Name Is" debuted at number 32 on the Billboard Hot 100 and remained on the charts for ten weeks, "Guilty Conscience" reached number 56 on the Billboard R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart, while "Just Don't Give a Fuck" peaked at number 62 on the chart.
Outside the US, the album reached number 9 on the Canadian Album Charts and was certified double platinum by the Canadian Recording Industry Association.
Upon release, The Slim Shady LP received generally positive reviews from music critics many praising Eminem's lyrical style. Allmusic gave the album five stars out of five, saying; "Years later, as the shock has faded, it's those lyrical skills and the subtle mastery of the music that still resonate, and they're what make The Slim Shady LP one of the great debuts in both hip-hop and modern pop music." David Browne of Entertainment Weekly said that the album's "unapologetic outrageousness" was it's strong point.
The Slim Shady LP launched Eminem to celebrity status, Interscope Records rewarded Eminem with his own label, Shady Records and went on a extensive tour schedule. He joined the Vans Wraped Tour as a last minute replacement of Cypress Hill, he would often play a show in the afternoon and would later play hip hop clubs. In one show, he slipped on a liquid and fell ten feet of the stage, cracking several ribs.
Controversy surround the album and the artist due to it's lyrical content, he was labeled as a misogynist and a homophobic, in an editorial, Billboard editor in chief Timothy White, claimed that Eminem was making money off of other people's misery.
Eminem's mother, Debra Nelson, filed a lawsuit for $10 million dollars for slander based on his claim that she uses drugs in the line "I just found out my mom does more dope than I do" from "My Name Is". After a two year trial, was given $25,000 of which she received $1,600 after legal fees.
In December 2001, DeAngelo Bailey, a janitor living in Roseville, Michigan was made the subject of the song "Brain Damage" in which he is portrayed as a school bully, filed a $1 million lawsuit against Eminem for slander and invasion of privacy.
In September 2003, 70-year-old widow Harlene Stein filed suit against Eminem and Dr. Dre on the grounds that "Guilty Conscience" contains an unauthorized sample of "Pigs Go Home" composed for the film Getting Straight by her husband, Ronald Stein, who died in 1988.
- 1. Public Service Announcement (skit)
- 2. My Name Is
- 3. Guilty Conscience (featuring Dr. Dre)
- 4. Brain Damage
- 5. Paul (skit)
- 6. If I Had
- 7. '97 Bonnie & Clyde
- 8. Bitch (skit)
- 9. Role Model
- 10. Lounge (skit)
- 11. My Fault
- 12. Ken Kaniff (skit)
- 13. Cum on Everybody
- 14. Rock Bottom
- 15. Just Don't Give a Fuck
- 16. Soap (skit)
- 17. As The World Turns
- 18. I'm Shady
- 19. Bad Meets Evil (featuring Royce da 5'9")
- 20. Still Don't Give a Fuck
- "My Name Is contains a sample of "I Got The" by Millie Jackson
- "Guilty Conscience" contains a sample of "Pigs Go Home" by Ronald Stein
- "If I Had" contains a sample of "Impeach the President" by The Honey Drippers
- "Cum on Everybody" contains a sample of "Gimme What You Got" by Le Pamplemouse
- "Bad Meets Evil" contains a sample of "Me & My Girlfriend" by 2Pac and "Modaji" by Dave Grusin
- "Rock Bottom" contains a sample of "Summertime" by Big Brother & The Holding Company (with Janis Joplin)
- "I'm Shady" is based on "Pusherman" by Curtis Mayfield and "I'm Your Pusher" by Ice-T
- "Bitch", "Cum on Everybody", "Just Don't Give a Fuck" and "Still Don't Give a Fuck" are retitled "Zoe", "Come on Everybody", "Just Don't Give" and "Still Don't Give" on the clean version of the album.
- "If I Had" loosely references the melody to the chorus of "If I Had $1,000,000" by Barenaked Ladies
- "'97 Bonnie & Clyde" is a merged version of The Slim Shady EP's "Mommy (skit)" and "Just the Two of Us".