Eminem Apologizes for Writing a Song He Now Refuses to Perform

Eminem apologised for writing song he now refuses to perform

It is one of Eminem’s most successful songs

It’s all eyes on Eminem once more as he gears up to release his 12th studio album, The Death of Slim Shady (Coup de Grâce).

And while we’re certain he’ll be spending the weeks and months following this performing some of the best tunes from the brand new album, there’s one song Eminem won’t take the stage to perform.

In fact, he goes as far as saying he refuses to play it, even apologising for it’s existence altogether. That’s big stuff for an artist; especially when the song in question is one of the most successful singles of his entire career.

Em, who was born Marshall Bruce Mathers III back in 1972, has broken down boundaries at every stage of his career – while also having a fair few controversies of his own.

As a white rapper with incredible commercial success, Eminem was a vital cog in breaking down racial barriers in the United States’ pop music industry as rap music became more mainstream across the US and then Europe.

And let’s be honest, at this stage, who doesn’t know the intro rap to ‘Lose Yourself’? No matter your personal taste, he has a catalogue that everybody has delved in to at some point or another whether through choice or not.

But one of Slim Shady’s most famous – and controversial – tunes takes us back more than two decades.

Way back in 2002, the notorious song was released on Mathers’ The Eminem Show album. But as far as he’s concerned, one of its biggest songs will never be performed again by him.

Em doing what he does best. (Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic)
Em doing what he does best. (Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic)

As well as having the more dark comedy persona of Slim Shady, Eminem is known for his incredibly serious takes on matters personal to him, which includes historical family issues. And it has meant that things have got pretty dark on occasion.

On the second single from The Eminem Show, the rapper calls his own mum a ‘selfish b***h’ who he hopes will ‘burn in hell’, before vowing that she will never get to see his daughter Hailie.

The song – ‘Cleanin’ Out My Closet’ – is an intense listen, with the music video no different.

See for yourself here but be warned, there is very strong language:

Some of the song’s lyrics include: “My whole life I was made to believe I was sick when I wasn’t, ’til I grew up, now I blew up it makes you sick to your stomach, doesn’t it?

“Wasn’t it the reason you made that CD for me, ma? So you could try to justify the way you treated me, ma?

“But guess what? You’re getting older now and it’s cold when you’re lonely and Nathan’s growing up so quick he’s gonna know that you’re phoney.

“And Haile’s getting so big now, you should see her, she’s beautiful. But you’ll never see her, she won’t even be at your funeral.”

Eminem holds his mother Debbie responsible for a lot of the problems he had as a child; problems that he says he then took in to his adolescent years and beyond. But despite twisting the metaphorical knife on his mum, an apology of sorts did come from the rapper in 2014 through song ‘Headlights’.

Eminem back in his Slim Shady era. (Martin Philbey/Getty Images)
Eminem back in his Slim Shady era. (Martin Philbey/Getty Images)

His apology begins: “My mom probably got it the worst. The brunt of it, but as stubborn as we are, did I take it too far?

“’Cleaning Out My Closet’ and all them other songs. But regardless, I don’t hate you ‘cause ma. You’re still beautiful to me, ’cause you’re my mom. But I’m sorry mama for ‘Cleanin’ Out My Closet’, at the time I was angry.

“Rightfully maybe so, never meant that far to take it though, ‘cause. Now I know it’s not your fault and I’m not making jokes. That song I no longer play at shows and I cringe every time it’s on the radio.”

Debbie sued her son for $10 million in 1999 before settling for $25,000. In the song ‘Headlights’, Eminem speaks out about a number of alleged incidents from his life with his mum. This included allegedly getting kicked out of his home on Christmas Eve, fighting, and his younger brother Nathan being sent to foster care.

Eminem and Dr. Dre back in 1999. (Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic)
Eminem and Dr. Dre back in 1999. (Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic)

But in the lyrics, Eminem tries to bury the hatchet.

He continues: “But ma, I forgive you, so does Nathan yo. All you did, all you said, you did your best to raise us both. Foster care, that cross you bare, few may be as heavy as yours. But I love you Debbie Mathers, oh what a tangled web we have.”

Rounding off his heartfelt apology, Eminem raps: “And I’m mad I didn’t get the chance to thank you for being my mom and my dad.”

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