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Title: DE AFARĂ: 20 Insanely Great Eminem Tracks Only Hardcore Fans Know
Author: ELADIO "wutanghiddenmember"
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Eminem, "Infinite" (1996)

Years before meeting Dr. Dre, Eminem recorded the Infinite LP for a local Detroit label in hopes of building his buzz. Virtually no one heard it at the time – it reportedly sold about a thousand copies. But his one-in-a-million lyrical skills were already there, as heard on the acrobatic title track: "Yo, my pen and paper cause a chain reaction/To get your brain relaxin'/The zany-actin' maniac in action..."


Indigenous Tribe feat. Eminem, "Drastic Measures (Microphone Autopsy)" (1997)

This guest appearance alongside Detroit underground group Indigenous Tribe was apparently issued on cassette around the time of Eminem's 1997 Slim Shady EP, back in the days when he was making a name for himself at subterranean showcases like Rap Olympics and Scribble Jam. While the song is kinda wack, Eminem's verse — he's third on deck — is worth checking out. "Hurry, I'm trying to pick up Cage's sister early," he raps, taking a shot at indie rapper Cage, who was complaining to anyone who'd listen that the fast-rising Eminem had stolen his style.

Da Ruckus feat. Eminem, "We Shine" (1998)

"We Shine" is a rare gem from Eminem's Detroit years. Over a buttery beat that flips samples of Isaac Hayes and Jeru the Damaja, Slim Shady spits Nineties-style similes like "We quick to pull the gat out, and set it/And leave you with more shit missing than a Lil Kim radio edit."

Bizarre feat. Eminem, Fuzz Scoota, "Trife Thieves" (1998)

Recorded for Bizarre of D12's 1998 debut EP Attack of the Weirdos, this track is mostly notable for Eminem's hilarious adlibs. When Bizarre raps, "I'm the reason niggas come 10 deep and end up leaving solo," you can hear Eminem in the background crying, "I'm by myself!" However, his classic, assonance-heavy flow is on wild display too. "I'll pile five dudes in a Pinto and pull up to/The 7 Mile drive-through at McDonald's and pile drive you."

Shabaam Sahdeeq feat. A.L., Eminem, Kwest Tha Madd Lad, "5 Star Generals" (1998)

You know those super-deep tracks Stan mentioned to prove he was Em's Number One fan-slash-stalker? This rugged posse cut – released by Brooklyn rapper Shabaam Sahdeeq and featuring a characteristically crazed guest verse from pre-stardom Eminem – is probably one of the things he was talking about.




Sway & King Tech feat. Eminem, "Freestyle" (1999)

Back in the Nineties, L.A. radio staples Sway and King Tech documented sessions recorded during their Wake Up Show broadcast on the Wake Up Show Freestyles series. Numerous volumes feature Eminem. On 1999's Vol. 5, he spits alongside Akinyele and Planet Asia, working out material that would appear on "Busa Rhyme" with Missy Elliott: "They call me Boogie Night, a stalker that walks awkward/Stick figure, with a dick bigger than Mark Wahlberg." Em ended up beefing with Wahlberg on MTV's Total Request Live a year later.

Eminem, "Any Man" (1999)

This fiendish tune, recorded for underground mainstay Rawkus Records' Soundbombing II compilation, features some of Em's most provocative rhymes ever ("I hope God forgives me for my sins/It probably all depends on if I keep killing my girlfriends"). Depending on how you feel about over-the-top fictional violence, it's either wickedly clever or incredibly offensive.

Eminem, "Get You Mad" (1999)

Recorded for a disc by Wake Up Show hosts Sway and King Tech (and also released as a Slim Shady LP bonus cut), "Get You Mad" is vintage Shady at his funniest and most ruthless. "If I hurt your self-esteem and you get dissed too bad, you know I just be saying that to get you mad," Eminem taunts after calling out a long list of rival stars — including LL Cool J, Insane Clown Posse, Master P, Brandy, Aaliyah and more. Many more.

Bad Meets Evil, "Scary Movies" (1999)

Thanks to "Nuttin' To Do"'s release just as Eminem's stock was soaring with The Slim Shady LP, the Bad Meets Evil 12-inch was popular enough to breach the Billboard rap charts. However, the B-side was the real winner. Eminem delivers an absolute blackout verse as "The one man that will drive off of the Grand Canyon/And hop out of a Grand Am and land in a hand-standing." The Source co-founder Jonathan Schecter's Game Recordings — which also had a side hustle in "Game Girls" softcore DVDs — released the tracks with cover art that featured porn stars Crystal Knight and Midori.

Limp Bizkit feat. Eminem, "Turn Me Loose" (1999)

"I don't do black music, I don't do white music/I do fight music for high school kids," raps Eminem on this Limp Bizkit demo. Originally recorded for the band's Significant Other album, it was never officially released, but eventually leaked out via bootlegs; while the opening line of his verse would end up on The Marshall Mathers LP. Eminem eventually turned on the band and dissed them on D12's "Girls."

DJ Spinna feat. Eminem, Thirstin Howl III, "Watch Dees" (1999)

With a plodding beat crafted from Madness' "One Step Beyond" and a boilerplate verse from Thirstin Howl III, this is one of the weaker tracks on DJ Spinna's 1999 production showcase Heavy Beats Vol. 1. But Eminem mines the track's creepy tone with aplomb, painting himself as "the old man who lives upstairs and starves his pets/Who never leaves his house, 'cause he thinks his car is possessed."

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