Today in Hip Hop History: May 23, 2000
Following the deaths of 2Pac, Biggie, Big L, Big Pun and several more, the turn of the millennium was a relative lull in the area of classic hip hop music. Black on Both Sides, 2001 The Chronic, and Things Fall Apart remain as the forefront of hip hop at the time, but one artist by far surpassed the others, and to this day, embodies a true rap god.
16 years ago today, Marshall “Eminem” Mathers blessed the world with his classic album (one of many), The Marshall Mathers LP. The album followed his classic major label debut, The Slim Shady LP, and moved towards more introspective analysis and lyrical profundity than his previous shock raps.
Released under Eminem’s recently created label, Shady Records, TMMLP contained classic tracks “Stan,” “The Real Slim Shady,” “The Way I Am” and “Kim.” As many have grown accustomed to with his music, the album was not without controversy. Senator Lynne Cheney insinuated his efforts contain the possibility of enticing a Columbine part 2. Ontario Attorney General Jim Flaherty opposed Eminem from entering Canada for a concert in 2000. A study by Edward G. Armstrong of Murray State University cites TMMLP as scoring a 78 percent in violent and misogynistic lyrics, as opposed to gangsta rap from 1987-1993 scoring a measly 22 percent.
Nothing we don’t already know about the antagonistic white rapper from Detroit.
TMMLP sold over 1.76 million copies in its first week, launching Eminem into history as the fastest-selling studio album in its initial release by any solo artist in American music history. The album is now RIAA Certified Diamond, selling over 12.5 million copies in the United States alone. It has also featured on several notable publications’ top albums of all time, including Time, Q, XXL and Rolling Stone.
Still capitalizing on TMMLP’s, a few days ago Eminem announced the re-release of TMMLP on cassette. Now a useless form of music medium, the tape appears to be more of a souvenir than anything.
— Marshall Mathers (@Eminem) May 19, 2016
Regardless, TMMLP arguably slotted Eminem into cultural stardom. Happy 16th birthday to an instantly classic hip hop album, The Marshall Mathers LP!