My Name Is

"My Name Is" is a song by American rapper Eminem from his second studio album The Slim Shady LP (1999). It is also the opening song of that album. The song samples British singer Labi Siffre's 1975 track "I Got The...". The song was ranked at #26 on "VH1's 100 Greatest Songs of the '90s".[2] "My Name Is" was also ranked #6 on Q Magazine's "1001 Best Songs Ever".[3] The song was placed at number 39 by Rolling Stone on their list of "100 Greatest Hip-Hop songs of all time" in April 2016.[4] The recording garnered Eminem his first Grammy Award for Best Rap Solo Performance at the 42nd Grammy Awards in 2000.

"My Name Is"
Eminem - My Name Is... CD cover.jpg
Single by Eminem
from the album The Slim Shady LP
ReleasedJanuary 25, 1999
Recorded1998
Genre
Length4:28
Label
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s)Dr. Dre
Eminem singles chronology
"Just Don't Give a Fuck"
(1998)
"My Name Is"
(1999)
"Role Model"
(1999)
Music video
"My Name Is" on YouTube
Audio sample
Eminem – "My Name Is"

BackgroundEdit

Producer Dr. Dre used a sample of Labi Siffre's "I Got The ..." for the rhythm track. Siffre, who is openly gay, said in a 2012 interview that he refused to clear the sample until sexist and homophobic lyrics were removed from the song: "Dissing the victims of bigotry – women as bitches, homosexuals as faggots – is lazy writing. Diss the bigots not their victims."[5] The bass and guitar riff used in the sample was performed by Siffre's session musicians Chas Hodges and Dave Peacock, who later became the duo Chas & Dave.[6]

During the time the song was released, Eminem and Insane Clown Posse were having a "rap feud". After the release of this song, Insane Clown Posse parodied this song with a song called "Slim Anus". "My Name Is" was later re-released in 2005 on Eminem's compilation album Curtain Call: The Hits. The song is mixed with Jay Z's song "Izzo (H.O.V.A.)" and Beck's song "Loser" on the video game DJ Hero, while Eminem himself remixed it with AC/DC's "Back In Black".[citation needed] A remixed version was featured in the trailer for the superhero film Shazam.

Music videoEdit

The video premiered on MTV Total Request Live on January 21, 1999. It was directed by Phillip Atwell, who would later direct music videos for several other Eminem songs, including "Stan", "Lose Yourself", "The Real Slim Shady", and "Just Lose It". The video starts out with a stereotypical redneck family watching television, who then come across a show starring "Marshall Mathers" (Eminem's real name). As the video goes on, Eminem parodies several TV shows and movies. He also imitates then-President Bill Clinton, Johnny Carson, a porn star, and others. Basketball player Gheorghe Mureșan has a cameo appearance as a ventriloquist with Eminem being used as the dummy in the scene. Dr. Dre, the song's producer, also has a cameo as a doctor. It also shows Eminem imitating a chemistry teacher.

The video was ranked #71 in NME's 100 Greatest Music Videos.[7]

As of 2019, the music video has been replaced on all official sites (including the official Eminem YouTube account and MTV's holding accounts) with alternative lyrics online making it more advertiser friendly. Lines such as, "Well, since age 12, I felt like I'm someone else 'Cause I hung my original self from the top bunk with a belt," are replaced with, "Well since age twelve I've felt like a caged elf," also with lines referencing ripping Pamela Lee's tits off replaced with ripping her lips off and kissing them, saying how they feel soft like silicon.

Critical receptionEdit

AllMusic's Stephen Thomas Erlewine singled out the song as an album highlight,[8] while Entertainment Weekly's David Browne wrote that this single and its accompanying video were both "attention-grabbing".[9]

Later, Eminem admitted he hates the song: "I didn’t hate that song when I first made it. But the shit that I really, really like, that I put my heart and soul into, I don’t get recognized for, like “The Way I Am.” There's a difference between me being funny and me being real. I feel like I don't get recognized for my best shit — the shit that's my real, true feelings and emotions."[10]

Track listingEdit

UK CD1[11]
No.TitleWriter(s)Producer(s)Length
1."My Name Is" (clean)Dr. Dre4:27
2."My Name Is" (explicit)
  • Mathers
  • Young
  • Siffre
Dr. Dre4:27
3."My Name Is" (instrumental)
  • Mathers
  • Young
  • Siffre
Dr. Dre5:58
Total length:14:52
UK CD2[12]
No.TitleWriter(s)Producer(s)Length
1."My Name Is" (clean)Dr. Dre4:27
2."My Name Is" (instrumental)
  • Mathers
  • Young
  • Siffre
Dr. Dre4:27
3."Just Don't Give A" (clean version)4:02
Total length:12:56
UK Cassette
No.TitleWriter(s)Producer(s)Length
1."My Name Is" (clean)Dr. Dre4:27
2."My Name Is" (instrumental)
  • Mathers
  • Young
  • Siffre
Dr. Dre4:27
Total length:8:54
Record Store Day 2020 7" single[13]
No.TitleWriter(s)Producer(s)Length
1."My Name Is"Dr. Dre4:27
2."Bad Guys Always Die" (from the Wild Wild West soundtrack)
  • Mathers
  • Young
Dr. Dre4:39
Total length:9:06
Notes

ControversyEdit

Eminem's mother Debbie Mathers filed a $10 million slander lawsuit against him for insinuating that she does drugs in the lyrics "99% of my life I was lied to, I just found out my mom does more dope than I do".[14] Eminem also berates his mother in the third verse of the song, with the lyrics "When I was little I used to get so hungry I would throw fits/How you gonna breastfeed me, Mom?! You ain't got no tits!" Debbie stated in her 2008 book My Son Marshall, My Son Eminem, "This line was horrible and upsetting, because I'd contracted toxemia-blood poisoning when I gave birth to him and hadn't been able to breast-feed." The lawsuit was settled in 2001 for $25,000, of which Debbie received only $1,600, after Judge Mark Switalski ruled that $23,354.25 of the $25,000 settlement should go to Fred Gibson, Debbie's former attorney.[15] Eminem would later reference this in his 2002 song "Without Me" with the lyrics, "I just settled all my lawsuits, fuck you Debbie!"[16]

Awards and nominationsEdit

Year Ceremony Award Result
1999[17] MTV Video Music Awards Best Male Video Nominated
Best New Artist in a Video Won
Best Direction in a Video Nominated
2000[18] Grammy Awards Best Rap Solo Performance Won

ChartsEdit

CertificationsEdit

Region Certification Certified units/sales
United Kingdom (BPI)[41] Platinum 600,000*
United States (RIAA)[42] 2× Platinum 2,000,000*

*sales figures based on certification alone

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Spence, D. (November 12, 2004). "The Slim Shady LP". IGN.
  2. ^ "100 Greatest Songs of the '90s". Blog.vh1.com. 2007-12-13. Retrieved 2012-09-09.
  3. ^ "1001 Best Songs Ever". Rocklistmusic.co.uk. Retrieved 2012-09-09.
  4. ^ "Rolling Stones' 100 Greatest Hip-Hop songs of all time". Rollingstone.com. Archived from the original on May 7, 2016. Retrieved April 19, 2016.
  5. ^ "Q&A: Labi Siffre". The New Humanist. December 14, 2012. Retrieved September 25, 2018.
  6. ^ Wilson, Chris (September 22, 2009). "Gertcha! Top ten things you never knew about Chas & Dave". Daily Mirror. Retrieved September 25, 2018.
  7. ^ "100 Greatest Music Videos". NME. Retrieved 15 December 2012.
  8. ^ Eminem "The Slim Shady LP". Allmusic. Retrieved 2014-09-05.
  9. ^ Eminem "The Slim Shady LP". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2014-09-05.
  10. ^ https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-features/eminem-the-rolling-stone-interview-55203/
  11. ^ "My Name Is [CD 1]: Amazon.co.uk: Music". Amazon.co.uk. Retrieved 2012-09-09.
  12. ^ "My Name Is [CD 2]: Amazon.co.uk: Music". Amazon.co.uk. Retrieved 2012-09-09.
  13. ^ "Eminem announces vinyl releases for Record Store Day". Revolt. March 6, 2020. Retrieved October 26, 2020.
  14. ^ "Eminem Sued By His Mom". Rolling Stone.
  15. ^ "Eminem's Mom Nets Measly $1,600 From Lawsuits Against Her Son". MTV.
  16. ^ "Without Me". Eminem.com.
  17. ^ "MTV Video Music Awards 1999". mtv.com. Retrieved 20 June 2014.
  18. ^ "Eminem". Grammy.com.
  19. ^ "Eminem – Hi! My Name Is". australian-charts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
  20. ^ "Eminem – Hi! My Name Is" (in German). austriancharts.at. Hung Medien. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
  21. ^ "Eminem – Hi! My Name Is" (in Dutch). ultratop.be. Hung Medien. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
  22. ^ "Top Singles – Volume 68, No. 26, April 19, 1999". RPM. Archived from the original on 23 October 2012. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
  23. ^ Danish Singles Chart 23 April 1999
  24. ^ "Eminem – Hi! My Name Is" (in French). lescharts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
  25. ^ "Chartverfolgung / Eminem / Single". musicline.de. Media Control Charts. Archived from the original (in German) on 6 March 2010. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
  26. ^ "Íslenski Listinn Topp 40 (NR. 319 Vikuna 23.4. - 29.4. 1999)" (PDF) (in Icelandic). Dagblaðið Vísir. Retrieved 14 July 2018. Cite magazine requires |magazine= (help)
  27. ^ "The Irish Charts – All there is to know" (insert "Eminem" into the "Search by Artist" box, and "My Name Is" into the "Search by Song Title" box). irishcharts.ie. Irish Recorded Music Association. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
  28. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – week 18, 1999". top40.nl. Dutch Top 40. Archived from the original (in Dutch) on 22 August 2011. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
  29. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Eminem – My Name Is" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved 17 March 2020.
  30. ^ "Eminem – Hi! My Name Is". charts.nz. Hung Medien. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
  31. ^ "Eminem – Hi! My Name Is". norwegiancharts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
  32. ^ "Eminem – Hi! My Name Is". swedishcharts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
  33. ^ "Eminem – Hi! My Name Is" (in German). hitparade.ch. Hung Medien. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
  34. ^ "Eminem". Official Charts Company. Archived from the original (select "View Singles" tab) on 25 August 2012. Retrieved 28 August 2011.
  35. ^ "Eminem Album & Song Chart History: Hot 100". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
  36. ^ "Eminem Album & Song Chart History: Alternative Songs". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. Retrieved 11 March 2015.
  37. ^ "Eminem Album & Song Chart History: R&B/Hip-Hop Songs". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
  38. ^ "Eminem > Charts & Awards > Billboard Singles". Allmusic. Macrovision. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
  39. ^ "Hot 100 Songs & New Music: 1 – 10 Songs | Billboard Music Charts". Billboard.com (in German). Retrieved 2012-09-09.
  40. ^ "ARIA End of Year Singles Chart 1999". Australian Recording Industry Association. Retrieved 17 March 2020.
  41. ^ "British single certifications – Eminem – My Name Is". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved April 21, 2017. Select singles in the Format field. Select Platinum in the Certification field. Type My Name Is in the "Search BPI Awards" field and then press Enter.
  42. ^ "American single certifications – Eminem – My Name Is". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved February 28, 2018. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH. 

External linksEdit