Eminem is no stranger to a little bit of controversy. Whether it’s backlash from his profanity-filled lyrics or a feud with his hip-hop peers, the Detroit rapper has undoubtedly rubbed many individuals up the wrong way. From Mariah Carey to Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera and others in the pop world, Eminem has particular targets.
However, fans have never fully understood why the artist (real name Marshall Mathers) aimed at pop stars. At the beginning of his career, Eminem poked fun at various mainstream artists and looked down on the top 40 singers. However, as he matured, he slowly changed his attitude.
In fact, he started collaborating with pop artists in the 2010s, such as with Rihanna on ‘Love The Way You Lie’ and Bruno Mars on ‘Lighters’. He’s even cultivated a new friendship with Ed Sheeran. “The reason that I went at pop stars back then is because people were calling me a pop rapper.”
He continued, “What’s bugged out to me is that — I don’t know if everybody understands this — if everybody could do what I did, they’d just do it, wouldn’t they? I’m not this manufactured pop thing, and I never was. A way people used to dismiss me was to call me pop. I got mad about that, and I lashed out.”
In his Bad Meets Evil track ‘A Kiss’, Mathers dissed Lady Gaga, rapping: “Tell Lady Gaga she can quit her job at the post office / She’s still a male lady / Wouldn’t f*ck with her d*ck / You heard it / The verdict’s in.” Which fuelled the fire of a rumour that she was a man.
However, in an interview with NME, Eminem revealed that just because he pokes fun at an artist, it doesn’t mean that he hates them, proclaiming, “I think Lady Gaga, as an artist, you know, she’s undeniable. That was one of them things written where sometimes I get a joke in my head, and I kinda want to share it with the world. So it was just one of them things man, and it’s, you know, it’s all in fun. It’s hip-hop.”
Eminem hasn’t taken aim at popstars since the mid-2000s, but he insists it anytime he aims at someone, unless it is an official diss track, it is just a bit of fun for him and his fans.