A question that often arises when discussing Marshall Bruce Mathers III, better known as rapper EMINEM or Slim Shady, is why is this man such a controversial artist?.
Marshall was born on October 17, 1972 in Kansas City, MO to a single mother, Mrs. Debbie Mathers - Briggs. He has a half brother, Nathan, born in 1986.
During his young childhood, Marshall moved back and forth between his mothers home town of St. Joseph, MO and the Detroit area, where he was often beat up by bullies because he was always the new kid. Because of his frequent moving, Marshall didn't make many friends. His only true companion was his uncle, Ronnie, who was the same age as Marshall. The two, big fans of rap music, which was quickly becoming popular, began rapping together. At age 12, Marshall was forced to grow up quickly when his uncle, who was a very troubled boy, committed suicide.
After the death of Ronnie, Marshall settled with his mother in Warren, MI, a working-class suburb outside Detroit. There, Marshall attended Lincoln High School, but dropped out after failing 9th grade in 1989 at age 17.
Being more interested in hip-hop music than school, he began rhyming at amateur nights in Detroit clubs. And worked at Gilbert's Lodge in St. Clair Shores. Mike Mazar, a manager at the restaurant (where Marshall was a cook from 1993-98), recalls Em as a hard worker with a certain dedication to music. Mazar was quoted as saying, "He worked Friday nights and was scheduled until 11 but at about 9 PM, he would just leave to go to the rap clubs. There was nothing we could do. We"d yell but it was hard to find good employees.".
Eminem releases his first full-length debut album, Infinite, on an independent label, but was not accepted into the rap community. He was dubbed a "Vanilla Ice" wannabe. He became very discouraged, but after talking to Wendy Day, founder of the Rap Collection, a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting hip-hop artists, Marshall decided to work harder to achieve his life-long goal.