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The Real Slim Shady

by

Eminem



Songfacts®:  You can leave comments about the song at the bottom of the page.

We were introduced to Eminem through his "Slim Shady" character, which was one of his alter egos along with Eminem and Marshall Mathers (his real name). On this track, Slim goes off in outrageous fashion on his critics, throwing in loads of pop culture/celebrity references along the way (a comedian named Tom Green was famous then). This song is meant to be a parody of stereotypical Pop songs, although many listeners didn't get the irony.
This was one of the last songs recorded for the album. Eminem was under a lot of pressure from his record company to come up with a hit single to get radio play and lead off the album - something similar to what "My Name Is" did for his first album. After working on the beat for most of the day, it came together when Eminem's keyboard and bass player were jamming on drum track Dr. Dre had programmed. Once they had the beat, Eminem put lyrics to it based on all the kids who were dressing and acting like he did. The next morning, Eminem came to the studio and recorded the vocals.
Eminem was exhausted by the time they came up with this song. Before they came up with the beat, he was ready to leave the album as it was and use "The Way I Am" as the first single. His record company wasn't about to let that happen.
Kathy Griffin is the voice at the beginning that announces, "Will the real Slim Shady please stand up?" She is in the video. Griffin was on the TV show Suddenly Susan.
The video features a troop of young men with blond hair dressed like Eminem. They represent the nightmare of many suburban parents - legions of fans who want to be just like Eminem.
Eminem performed this at the 2000 MTV Video Music awards, in a very memorable performance. Trailed by a legion of lookalikes, Eminem entered from outside Radio City Music Hall and performed the song on the way in. The guys playing the doppelgängers all had to dye their hair Eminem-blond for the performance.
The lyrics go out of their way to be offensive. Eminem was trying to create some controversy because he knew it was get a lot of publicity and sell more albums. The radio version is edited.
The Wisconsin radio station WZEE was fined $7,000 by the FCC for playing an unedited version of this song. The station claimed a technical malfunction caused the CD player to cue up the wrong track. The FCC also fined Colorado radio station KKMG $7,000 for playing the edited version of this, claiming the song was "patently offensive." The fines were rescinded after the rap industry made the case that banning this is a violation of free speech.
Eminem has gotten lots of mileage out of jabs at celebrities in his songs, and he got plenty of attention here with lyrics implying that Christina Aguilera had oral sex with Carson Daly and Fred Durst (Limp Bizkit lead singer). Aguilera denied this and called Eminem a pig, which didn't seem to bother him. At the 2002 MTV Video Music Awards, Aguilera presented the award for Best Male Video, and when Eminem won for "Without Me," she didn't seem happy.
This won a Grammy in 2001 for Best Rap Solo Performance. The album Marshall Mathers LP also won for Best Rap Album.
The judge who sentenced Eminem to a fine and community service for pointing a gun at the road manager of the Insane Clown Posse told him "Now is the time to please stand up," a reference to the line "Will the real Slim Shady please stand up."
Like his first hit, "My Name Is," Eminem stopped performing this in concert a few years after it was released. In later years, he would sometimes do a medley of these songs.
The chorus from this song was included at the end of Weird Al Yankovic's "Angry White Boy Polka" on his album Poodle Hat. (thanks, Steph - SoCal, CA)
Comedian and voice talent Ralph Garman recorded a parody of this entitled "The Real Slim Santa" where St. Nick raps about his substantial weight loss. (thanks, Ekristheh - Halath)
Eminem
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Comments (24):

I love this song!! The chorus is the best part!
- Katie, soddy daisy, TN
Ya'lL act like you never seen a white person before? lol...This is my favorite part of the song. People please, why criticize? this is simple art. Only Eminem can be funny, cocky, mean, rude, and ignorant because he simply can! he has so much power and isn't afraid to tell people how he feels inside. Thats what makes a true artist. An artist isn't Britney Spears or Jessica Simpson who can't sing and express themselves freely. Eminem is an amazing preformer. He has done things that most people wish they have. He doesn't let anyone stop him, and he is insane and is very happy that way! lol
- Maxiell, Pompano Beach, FL
There are tons of spoofs for this song Bob Rivers Slim Santa (Thats right, 'Weird Al' Did NOT MAKE THAT ONE) nor did Al make "Will the Real Slim Shady Please shut Up" heres how I know 1. They are too vulgar to be 'Weird Al' Yankovic the only cuss word Al has said in ANY of his songs is in "Couch Potato" to were he said "Oh Dogs that cr*p and pee" 2. 'Weird Al' Yankovic Usualy SINGS HIS OWN SONGS!!! the only exception is when he has his wife along with him. Aside from that note: this is his best hit since "My Name Is" You got that part right indefinetly.
- Sean, Denver, CO
This is is a good song. It reminds me of the old saying "Its always darkest just before the dawn" in the sense that he gets to the point where he wants to kill himself but realizes that its just a dream and that life is very ironic because wen u r feelin good sumtin bad happens. but wen ur feeling bad sumtin good happens. Its all just a way god evens out the world i guess.
- Logan, Lawrenceburg, KY
Eminem doesn't give a damn whether or not he's offending people. That's just how he is, and I can't help but respect someone like that. His songs are much more interesting than other Rap songs, because he talks about real life, and real life sucks. Once again, Eminem is a bit psycho, but that's perfectly okay. We all are a little psycho deep down inside.

~~Ta~~
- Z, Somewhere over the rainbow, WA
Dude, I love this song and wish I had a way and the guts to say half the stuff he does. Even if it *was* for publicity and only publicity, I wouldn't have said half the stuff he did. And I gotta say even I agree with a lot of it. Score one for the people, 0 points for society! w00t w00t
- Jailene, k-tOWN, WA
"But Slim, if you win, wouldn't that be weird?"
- Ekristheh, Halath, United States
Re: Andrew ".....its soposed to be offensive...ITS RAP" Outkast are considered rappers, but there's very little offensive about their music, but they are still very popular
- Dave, Cardiff, Wales
Like I've said on other posts, not a real fan of rap but some (like this song) actually say something and in turn are pretty good.
- Jon, Oakridge, OR
i think all the ppl that says that the song is offensive r retarted.....its soposed to be offensive...ITS RAP...and how wouold u feel if ur husband/wife left and took ur kid with her....lik it no wonder its offensive from the ppl that listen to his songs he has a messed up life and these songs r exspressing his feelings towrds his life and all the messed up things that happend..although his life is kinda messed up i wouold diie to be lik him.
- andrew, ny, ND
i like this song because he is the real slim shady. the real slim shady please stand up please stand up. anyway it doesnt matter! i like this song!
- sarah floyd, bloomingdale, IL
Eminem is the only rap I listen to. He is the best rapper! He doesn't sing about money or girls like other rappers do. He sings about real life situations.
- Jeevan, Brampton, Canada
i love eminem! he's the best rapper ever. he doesnt sing about girls, money, bling, and clubs. he sings about real life stuff. and yeah sometimes he sings about funny things like in just lose it and even this song kinda. i just think there is not other better rapper than eminem.
- Nikki, Brampton, Canada
I wish the real slim shady would please shut up. This song is so offensive.
- Valerie, Evansville, IN
i love this song and its artist coz hes fit and this song is soooooooo catchy i listen to about 10secs of it and i have it in my head for the restof the day. I LOVE EMINEM HES GORGE!!!
- sarah, cambridge, England
this song annoys me soooo much!! even if you cut out all the offencive language in the song it is still really offencive...thats why i never liked eminem to begin with. he always takes the micky out of somebody whether its michael jackson, parents, fat people, old people, people who work at fast food resturants....i'd also like to point out that on the video for blue and yellow purple pils/hills or whateva, the wrestler known as chris jericho is seen in it at the bar...i think dressed as a woman(btw, the cactus guy is stupid! :P)
- joe, liverpool, England
Eminem is now a very big icon in rap. When this was realeased it was considered to make Eminem the rapper he is today. Eminem rules.
- amanda, brighton, CO
This song is annoying. All he keeps saying is "please stand up, please stand up" its sooooooooooooo annoying.
- Joshua, Niagara Falls, Canada
The song is catchy,its cool and Eminem is a great father. I mean a tattoo on his arm of his daughter,he is so sweet. I think his wife was right about about Marshal not being a singer but at the same time he has great talent,the only thing is that if he is a great dad why does he say so much about ofending other ppl,its not really a good example and also him ofending alot to his own ex wife but you know whatever,I hope everything comes out good.
- Casie, Denver, CO
this song and video are brill they ma represent a nightmare bt to me they represent a dream and i mean it i would love to be more like em and would love to see him
- sarah, cambridge, England
This also could be about everyone going after Eminem to be censored yetmillions of others do the same thing and are liked.
- Alex, New Orleans, LA
My boyfriend loves this song and likens it to Plato's 'Apology' (a speech given by Socrates refusing to apologise for corrupting the youth). I took a look at the Apology and can see a scarily large number of parallels. Who'd've thought it?
- Helen, York, England
Someone told me that this song features a sample of a song by Stevie Wonder. If anyone can confirm this, please let me know.
- Dave, Cardiff, Wales
"Performed at the 2000 MTV Video Music awards, with Eminem coming in from the street followed by the Slim Shady lookalikes from his video."
these kids weren't from his video, they were guys from the crowd that the producers pulled out, dyed their hair, and fitted them for clothes THAT NIGHT
- SarahK, baldwinsville, NY
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