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How to Rap Like: Eminem

 

In this article I will analyze, decipher and emulate the rapping style of Eminem.

Who is Eminem

Eminem is one of the most controversial and popular rap artist of our time. He is being ridiculed and attacked from more than one cirle of society, while at the same time, he is being able to break the charts and shatter the sales records at will.

eminem-rapper-musician-widescreen-2560x1600

Eminem, real name Marshall Mathers, is a white rapper who managed to pierce the hip-hop industry. At the time of his come-up, this feat was close to impossible, because the public associated rap with the black and they couldn’t see how a skinny white kid from Detroit can win votes, but he did it and that’s why he qualifies to be the rapper who’s gonna be closely examined in this article.

Song Material

I chose to analyze Eminem’s flow in the song used as the main soundtrack for his autobiographical movie “8th Mile”- Lose Yourself. The reason I’m going to analyze this song is because it became one of his trademark songs. It contains catchy musical patterns, witty bars, emotion and purpose. It has millions of views on youtube, it contributed greatly to the marketing campaign promoting the movie and I personally find it motivational and inspiring.

Verse Extraction

I will pick the first verse, write it down in a quatrain fashion and begin my features analysis. Verse Extraction is essential when studying someone else’s flow, because the verse is the place where he is showcasing all the technique he knows. Its the place where he reveals his rhymes and musical patterns and everything. The truth is that if you know what to look for, you can truly master someone else’s style. Now the verse:

(First Quatrain)
His palms are sweaty, knees weak arms are heavy There’s vomit
on his sweater already, mom’s spaghetti He’s nervous,
but on the surface he looks calm and ready to drop
bombs, but he keeps on forgetting what he

(Second Quatrain)
wrote down the whole crowd goes so loud He
opens his mouth but the words won’t come out,
He’s choking how, everybody’s joking now,
The clock’s run out, time’s up, over bloah !Snap

(Third Quatrain)
back to reality Oh, there goes gravity
Oh, there goes Rabbit he choked, He’s so mad but he
won’t, give up that Easy no, He won’t have it
he knows, his whole back’s to these ropes, It don’t matter

(Last Quatrain)
he’s dope, He knows that but he’s broke,  He’s so stagnant
he knows When he goes back to his mobile home that’s when it’s,
Back to the lab again yo, This whole rhapsody
He better go capture this moment and hope it don’t pass him

Features Analysis

Right from the start you can see the level of complexity used in this song.

In the first quatrain:

His palms are sweaty, knees weak arms are heavy There’s vomit
on his sweater already, mom’s spaghetti He’s nervous,
but on the surface he looks calm and ready to drop
bombs, but he keeps on forgetting what he

Em2_1

He employs the wordplay technique, combined with the Big L technique for compound rhymes.
Palms are sweaty acts as the main compound rhyme. You can see that throughout this quatrain he is just adding new rhyme words to this rhyme. For example: Arms are heavy, sweater already, calm and ready, on forgetting.

Now in order for him to make it interesting, he squeezes in other compound rhymes, which act as the secondary rhymes, bring there to just increase the intricacy of the flow. That’s the flow diagram of this quatrain.

*
12-palms are sweaty, arms are heavy, sweater already, mom’s spaghetti, calm and ready, on forgetting
33-knees weak
4-nervious, surface

First Quatrain Rhyming Pattern

12, 3312
12,12 4,
4 12
,12

Further Reading: Quatrain Analysis(Big L-Danger Zone)

In the second Quatrain:

wrote down the whole crowd goes so loud He
opens his mouth but the words won’t come out,
He’s choking how, everybody’s joking now,
The clock’s run out, time’s up, over bloah !Snap

emm

Here you can see that the primary compound rhyme is wrote down. The whole quatrain is based upon this compound rhyme. Even though in the end, he is twisting the rhyme a bit, making it more of a sound rhyme, he is still using only one main compound rhyme for the creating of this quatrain.

*
12-wrote down, whole crowd, goes so loud, open his mouth, come out, choking how, joking now, run out, over bloah

Second Quatrain Rhyming Pattern

12 12 12
12 12
12, 12
12, ,12

Further Reading: Why Was It Successful(Eminem-My Name Is)

In the third Quatrain:

back to reality Oh, there goes gravity
Oh, there goes Rabbit he choked, He’s so mad but he
won’t, give up that Easy no, He won’t have it
he knows, his whole back’s to these ropes, It don’t matter

emin

That’s a musical pattern. Now it’s a bit more complicated so follow me. You can see that the main compound rhyme is reality Oh. However, the way he says the rhyme makes it a musical pattern, because he puts more stress on the OH. Its really easy once you try it yourself. Its pretty much a repetition of a sound. Did I miss something? Yes..His main rhyme is not 2 words long, its 3!. That’s incredibly difficult to do technically and when you add the meaning of the lyrics, its pretty genius.
*
23-reality Oh, gravity Oh, rabbit he choked, he wont, easy no, he knows, these ropes
1-back, mad, that, have, back,
4-goes, goes, whole

Third Quatrain Rhyming Pattern

123, 42
3, 423,12
3, 123, 12
3, 4123

Further Reading: Eminem Beautiful Lyrics Analyzer

In the last quatrain:

he’s dope, He knows that but he’s broke,  He’s so stagnant
he knows When he goes back to his mobile home that’s when it’s,
Back to the lab again yo, This whole rhapsody
He better go capture this moment and hope it don’t pass him

Eminem

You can see that he keeps on using the rhyme scheme from the third quatrain in the beginning-first couplet.
He then finishes off with a little sound scheme lasting two bars.
*
23-he’s dope, he’s broke,
4-knows,knows, goes, mobile, home,yo,whole,moment hope
1-stagnant,back, lap,capture, pass

Last Quatrain Rhyming Pattern

23, 423, 1
4444 55,
114, 41
1441

Practice and master the techniques presented in this article. I wish you luck.

  • rap tips
comments
 
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  • The Inventor
    January 11, 2014 at 1:52 pm

    You should analyze the rhyme scheme in the song Infinite by Eminem. The first quatrain has one of the most complex rhyme schemes ever.

    Reply

    • J - Struce
      January 11, 2014 at 2:24 pm

      Ayo, my pen and paper cause a chain reaction
      To get your brain relaxing, the zany acting maniac in action
      A brainiac in fact son, you mainly lack attraction
      You look insanely whack with just a fraction of my track spun

      Reply

      • J - Struce
        January 11, 2014 at 2:25 pm

        that thing i did was one of the complex rhyme scheme

        Reply

        • The Inventor
          January 11, 2014 at 2:41 pm

          Eminem is top 5 dead or alive.

          Reply

          • J - Struce
            January 11, 2014 at 2:48 pm

            That guy, is the master of the game. He has practiced so much that if we write our best verse, it will reach his minimum verse quality


          • The Inventor
            January 11, 2014 at 3:46 pm

            My mind and words cause a great reaction,

            So you can taste passion, the fake acting braniac in action

            A maniac I’m bad son, you lame lacking traction

            While I’m sustaining rap with just the passion of my rap song


          • Anonymous
            January 11, 2014 at 4:35 pm

            Inventor everything was perfect just the last bar end rhyme it should be something rhyming with traction, not rap song. Maybe it might be bending words.


          • P Smooth
            January 11, 2014 at 6:38 pm

            Anonymous, fuck outta here

            Giving feedback, while you missing skill to feed tracks,
            better lead practical practice, infact this, practice, my shit, read the bible,
            leave rapping manual, you’ll never manage, to get the crap done,
            factual raps, hop blunt, and wording is my magnum, infinite ammo, i ain’t playing the game, tho,
            I want a clean slate, long plain plate, mix the shit, make a mix tape,
            Just to get at yo ass, switch fates, pick names, also no names if you wanna,
            I’m gunning, got this game blunted, put this down, old school, get the magazine, and the rap crown, getting cream,


          • The Inventor
            January 11, 2014 at 7:59 pm

            Yeah it was meant to be a slant rhyme.


  • Mullins
    January 9, 2014 at 10:37 pm

    Im a white rapper so this eminem article was great! Also, can we have a “How to Rap Like Mac Miller”
    That’d be so cool

    Reply

  • Shre
    Shre
    December 31, 2013 at 5:09 pm

    I have managed to write some Verse like this maintaining a perfect flow , it helped me a lot

    Reply

  • MC
    November 13, 2013 at 4:32 am

    Pull off in chevys, G’z be, Lost in plenty of weed smoke
    Eyes Red, Coughin’ heavy, droppin’ deadly lines off top
    composin’ non stop I’ll be tossed with many names that
    loss time but gained it back already with cash

    I Just attempted the first quatrain. But this scheme is crazy. You think he plotted it before writing? I wouldn’t doubt it. but you never know

    Reply

    • MC
      November 13, 2013 at 4:53 am

      Pull off in chevys, G’z be, Lost in plenty of weed smoke
      Eyes Red, He Coughin’ heavy, droppin’ deadly lines off top
      composin’ non stop I’ll be tossed with many names that
      loss time but get cash that’s steady, with fame *****

      Made a few corrections.

      Reply

  • k.ray
    October 13, 2013 at 1:33 am

    Spit legendary and flow and create a cemetery for show and he ate tinkle bell the fairy real slow they quit unnecessary I know he slit his secretary’s throat split a secondary to tow lit or cremate predatory whoa
    1-spit/quit/slit/split/lit
    23-legendary and flow/cemetery for show/fairy real slow/unnecessary I know/secretary throat/predatory whoa
    4-create/ate/cremate

    Celebratory for dough temmate hereditary bio murderous state money he take steak on his plate the killers are ballin callin a druggy that’s as dangerous he’s nervous but wit a purpose he’s bait for a hit but u can’t relate barbarous terrorist today he sees his last date
    1-muderous/dangerous/nervous/purpose/barbarous/terrorist
    23-celebratory for dough/hereditary bio
    4-temmate/state/steak/plate/bait/relate/date
    5-ballin callin

    Please help me wit this stuff cause its hard…. How do I make it easier to make and make it 2 where it makes sense??? And if I did anything wrong please help me fix it…
    Thanks so much bro!!
    NEWMANJARON 4 LYFE!!

    Reply

    • k.ray
      October 13, 2013 at 5:46 pm

      3rd and 4th qurartain

      Reply

    • October 15, 2013 at 8:08 pm

      3rd
      123, 42
      3, 423,12
      3, 123, 12
      3, 4123
      Spit legendary and flow and create a cemetery for show and he ate tinkle bell the fairy real slow they quit unnecessary I know he slit his secretary’s throat split a secondary to tow lit or cremate predatory whoa

      That’s perfectly written! Everything is on the correct spot. Well done!!

      4th
      23, 423, 1
      4444 55,
      114, 41
      1441
      Celebratory for dough temmate hereditary bio murderous state money he take steak on his plate the killers are ballin callin a druggy that’s as dangerous he’s nervous but wit a purpose he’s bait for a hit but u can’t relate barbarous terrorist today he sees his last date
      1-muderous/dangerous/nervous/purpose/barbarous/terrorist
      23-celebratory for dough/hereditary bio
      4-temmate/state/steak/plate/bait/relate/date
      5-ballin callin

      This one is right too man. Excellent work there. You took the time to duplicate those extremely difficult rhyme schemes and you did it without a mistake!

      Reply

      • k.ray
        October 15, 2013 at 9:47 pm

        Again thanks bro! but is there any way i can still duplicate this same scheme and make sense with it instead of having a whole bunch of random words….. and do you have any advice on how to freestyle like em or Big L cause those guys were beast!!!!! Thanks so much bro!!!
        NEWMANJARON 4 LYFE!!

        Reply

        • October 18, 2013 at 10:20 am

          Of course there is. All you need to do is define your rhyme scheme, then think of what you want to say. Formulate it in a sentence perhaps. Then, you just switch this word with that word, until you make it into the form of the rhyme scheme.

          The magic is switching up words in a way, which still keeps the essence of what you wanted to say in the beginning.

          As far as Em’s freestyle, they’ve practiced alot. Battles helped Em to unlock that freestyle bad guy in him.
          It’s all about practice. Make a ritual to freestyle anytime you’re walking, or anytime you have to wait on a line.

          Habit is the best way to get better faster.

          Reply

          • k.ray
            October 18, 2013 at 9:30 pm

            Thanks alot I’m gonna work on changing the sentences because that seems difficult but ill get it………
            I get Wat u saying about freestyleing like em ill have to get into the habit of freestyleing pretty much 24/7!!!

            Thanks alot bro I can’t wait until I’m famous and help millions more ppl fund this sight


  • k.ray
    October 12, 2013 at 3:59 am

    His heart is heavy no breath left the art of envy his dart deadly fell apart already from a bullet to ya stomach k-mart of artillery caused a blood tart in ya belly
    12-heart is heavy/art of envy/dart deadly/apart already/k-Mart artillery/tart in ya belly
    3-breath/left
    4- bullet/stomach

    Shells fall in harmony like adeles drawl or estelles call and a droid janelle doll like a miguel pub craw Gabriel mall jail tall
    12-shells fall/adeles drawl/estelles call/janelle doll/miguel pub crawl/Gabriel mall/jail tall
    I’ll do the other 2 next but how’d I do? Sorry it makes no sense… It’s hard to make sense with all that crazy ass rhyme scheme so can u help me make the scheme wit ease and how to make it make sense?
    Thanks so much bro
    NEWMANJARON 4 LYFE!!

    Reply

  • Gavin Justus (DuSk)
    September 10, 2013 at 10:16 pm

    Do how to rap like Em’s Slim Shady ego, it has a better style then anything else.

    Reply

  • k.ray
    July 26, 2013 at 2:12 am

    We need a kendrick lamar article….. Dude is just amazing it would be great to learn how to rap like king kendrick lamar…. Please make a kendrick one

    Reply

    • July 26, 2013 at 9:00 pm

      Okay man, I’m getting quite a big volume of requests for Kendrick. It will be done, guaranteed. Just stay tuned and I’ll hit you up with the facebook page, when we’ve published it. ;)

      Reply

  • jake
    April 13, 2013 at 6:49 pm

    you can definitely see who influenced Em by analyzing his style. Kool G rap,Rakim,Big L,Masta ace. when rakim came out he took lyricism to another level (g rap as well) i feel like em took that level and added a few steps. the rhyming in songs such as rock bottom is brilliant and the emotion comes through flawlessly. if anyones style is the hardest to emulate it would have to be EM. Dope analysis !

    Reply

  • edvinas
    April 12, 2013 at 7:21 pm

    jo rappin manual id be great if u could do how to rap like eaze e

    Reply

  • March 6, 2013 at 12:40 am

    Good tips bruh bruh lets be honest the beat is what matters too like just listen to my boy Miguel Curtidor he’s got dope beats that make you wanna rap and shit lmao http://www.soundcloud.com/miguelcurtidor

    Reply

  • Anthony
    March 3, 2013 at 10:37 am

    hey, i got a whole buch of songs and everyone i show say they’re really good or amazing but i can never get into a studio to actually record and really make them, what should i do

    Reply

  • March 1, 2013 at 2:59 pm

    you should do Kendrick lamar

    Reply

  • D-Ea$y
    D-Ea$y
    March 1, 2013 at 2:56 pm

    This was a good article really informative, Eminem was the ish. but I was hoping you could do an article on some of the newer rappers like Childish Gambino, Big Sean, or even Wale, Like a lyrical analysis on them or something. Thanks tho :)

    Reply

  • MuZ!K
    March 1, 2013 at 3:06 am

    its RAP SHIT not Rhapsody

    Reply

  • shawnz
    February 21, 2013 at 7:06 pm

    the numbers itself is his rhymes he placed

    Reply

  • Anonymous
    February 21, 2013 at 4:36 am

    what are the numbers used for when counting the patterns

    Reply

  • Subbu
    February 5, 2013 at 3:07 pm

    and also Immortal Technique, Lupe Fiasco and Aesop Rock

    Reply

    • RappingManual
      February 5, 2013 at 4:13 pm

      Hey Subbu, what’s up?

      Kendrick Lamar? We might do that. Immortal Technique? We’ll definitely do that!
      Next in line was Method Man, if I’m not mistaken, but I’ll see what I can do about it. ;)

      Reply

      • FV
        February 9, 2013 at 9:58 pm

        One Suggestion: Tech N9ne, the master of the choppy flow. Think about it, you know you want to. Not sure which song to suggest…Maybe “Low”, “World Wide Choppers” or “Alone”.

        Reply

        • RappingManual
          February 10, 2013 at 2:38 pm

          I’ve been meaning to check his shit out actually, thanks for the suggestion FV!

          We’ll see. I’m gonna do it either in the How to Rap Like: or the Couplet Desipher Rubric, but he’s gonna be done man, that’s a certain.

          Reply

    • Anonymous
      December 11, 2013 at 10:09 pm

      I don’t mean to harsh, but why I always wondered why people like Kendrick? His songs are slow and he has a typical rapping voice… Just tell me why and maybe I’ll look more into him

      Reply

  • Subbu
    February 5, 2013 at 3:04 pm

    all articles r great.. learned a lot.. ‘ll love to read about How To Rap Like Kendrick Lamar.. He’s my favourite rapper right now

    Reply

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