The song that changed Eminem’s life forever
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The song that changed Eminem's life forever

Few artists in recent years have come close to the fame and fortune Eminem has amassed over the last two decades. A potent performer and an expert businessman, Em managed to navigate the difficulty of being a white rapper with searing wit and unbridled creativity with the pen. However, there can be no denying that he would never have broken free from Marshall Mathers’ life without his alter-egos, Slim Shady and Eminem.

It’s hard to pinpoint the moment somebody’s life changed forever, but for Eminem, it is easy. It was one simple song that convinced him he was now an icon. For all his love and connections to Dr Dre and Snoop, Em’s first rap group love wasn’t N.W.A. but the landmarks ensemble Run-DMC.

That love was shown very clearly during a recent Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony as Em took up the mic to give his fellow rappers Run-DMC an induction they would never forget. The Hall of Fame isn’t exactly bursting with rap inductees, so this was a special moment anyhow. But Eminem’s speech, where he shared his love for the band and their life-changing songs, is magnificent.

“I remember being in ninth grade when Raising Hell came out,” he recalled. “Two years later, I still remember being in ninth grade when Tougher Than Leather came out. I had skipped school, if you can believe that, to go buy Tougher Than Leather on cassette the day it came out.” The audience squealed with delight.

But there was one song on the record that would push Eminem into the direction he was destined for. “As soon as I heard ‘Run’s House,’ man, it was pretty much a wrap for me,” he said, confirming just how influential the song was for a young Eminem.

“Marshall Mathers became Eminem. It was the first time Run-DMC had changed my life, but it wouldn’t be the last.”

“They didn’t take no for an answer, much the same way as they didn’t give up when much of the world refused to recognize rap as real music,” Eminem added, noting previously how the band had managed to change music with a turntable and a microphone. “They were the first rock stars of rap. They were the first movie stars of rap. They were the first rap group played on MTV.”

Watch Eminem induct Run-DMC into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame below and listen to ‘Run’s House’ below that. Who knows, maybe we’ll get a new Eminem out of it?