Eminem Credits Tupac For Teaching Him “How To Make Songs That Felt Like Something”

Slim shows much love and respect to the late rapper.

Eminem penned an emotional tribute to his idol, Tupac Shakur, for Paper Magazine’s “Nowstalgic” issue.

In the letter, Slim Shady outlined the enormous influence Pac had on his own life and career—and hip hop as a whole. For Em, it was Pac’s enormous vocabulary and pitch-perfect word-choice that made his work resonate with so many. “The way he chose which words to say with which beat was genius; it’s like he knew what part of the beat and what chord change was the right place to hit these certain words… to make them jump off the track and make you feel what he was saying. Whatever he was rapping about, it was urgent.”

The emotional intensity of the lyrics also made his songs incredibly relatable to listeners. “You just felt every aspect of his pain, every emotion: when he was happy, when he was sad. His ability to touch people’s lives like that was incredible. Tupac was the first one to really help me learn how to make songs that felt like something.”

Em signed off on the lengthy letter by saying that these emotions will ensure that Pac’s music will live forever. “When you make songs like Tupac did, songs that feel like something, that feeling never goes away. I can put ’If I Die 2Nite’ in and want to fight somebody the second it comes on. That’s the kind of emotion he sparked. I could put ’Dear Mama’ on and damn near be in tears. He was just so good at evoking emotions through songs and I picked up so much from that.”

"It's one life to live, so live it the best you can. The world could use one less man." - Nas