Updated: May 28, 2022
Marshall Bruce Mathers III (born October 17, 1972), known professionally as Eminem, is an American rapper, songwriter, and record producer. He is credited with popularizing hip hop in middle America and is critically acclaimed as one of the greatest rappers of all time. Eminem's global success and acclaimed works are widely regarded as having broken racial barriers for the acceptance of white rappers in popular music. While much of his transgressive work during the late 1990s and early 2000s made him widely controversial, he came to be a representation of popular angst of the American underclass, and has been cited as an influence for many artists of various genres.
Eminem signed with Dr. Dre's Aftermath Entertainment and subsequently achieved mainstream popularity in 1999 with The Slim Shady LP. His next two releases, The Marshall Mathers LP (2000) and The Eminem Show (2002), were worldwide successes and were both nominated for the Grammy Award for Album of the Year. After the release of his next album, Encore (2004), Eminem went on hiatus in 2005, largely due to a prescription drug addiction.He returned to the music industry four years later with the release of Relapse (2009) and Recovery was released the following year. Recovery was the best-selling album worldwide of 2010, making it Eminem's second album, after The Eminem Show in 2002, to be the best-selling album of the year worldwide.
Eminem received mixed reviews for Revival (2017), and Kamikaze (2018) was described by many critics as somewhat curmudgeonly in tone. Such criticism had little impact on sales, however, and in 2020 Music to Be Murdered By became his 10th consecutive album to debut at the top of the Billboard 200 chart. In addition, Eminem occasionally collaborated with rapper Royce da 5′9″ under the name Bad Meets Evil; among their releases was the EP Hell: The Sequel (2011). In 2022 Eminem performed with other hip-hop stars—including Dr. Dre, Mary J. Blige, and Snoop Dogg—at the Super Bowl halftime show. Later that year he was selected for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.