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Eminem - The Real Story

Eminem and Slim Shady are both stage names for the same artist, and fans from around the world often download his music videos. Whether you are looking to download music videos for free or would be willing to pay for videos from your favorite artist, you will enjoy them much more if you know more about the performer. Before you watch music videos by Eminem or anyone else, take some time to learn about the musician himself.

The Life and Art of Eminem

Eminem was born as Marshall Bruce Mathers III. Even though he was named for his father, Marshall Bruce Mathers, Jr., he was raised by his mother. His father abandoned the small family shortly after the boy was born. Marshall spent his youth moving between Kansas City, St. Joseph, and Warren, Michigan. He got his musical start as a teenager in Warren, Michigan, where he took the name M&M (Marshal Mathers). He began performing rap as an armature at age fourteen, and in 1995 he joined Soul Intent and released his first single.

The young rapper quickly gained a following among underground hip hop audiences, and he dropped out of high school at the age of 17 after being forced to repeat his freshman year due to lack of attendance. He worked as a cook and dishwasher at a local restaurant while he worked on his art, earning minimum wage. He had been signed to FBT Productions since his beginnings in 1992, but it was not until his first album was released in 1996 that he began to gain a following. With the debut if Infinite, the young musician changed his moniker to Eminem.

His fist albums were viewed with much controversy. Many accused him of copying the styles of other artists, such as Nas, AZ, and Cage. In 1997, Eminem won second place in the Rap Olympics, which continued to grow his following. In 1999 he released The Slim Shady LP, his first major studio album. It became one of the year's most popular albums, going triple platinum. The lyrics were quite controversial, including songs dealing with death and murder.

This first platinum album ushered in a new era for the artist, and he released several multi-platinum albums over the next six years. In 2005, many rumors about Eminem's immanent retirement surfaced, and he took a break from recording. In the same year, he was listed as #58 in the book 100 People Who Are Screwing up America, where the author Bernard Goldberg criticize the explicit lyrics of the performer.

Eminem has faced much scrutiny from the rapping world because he is Caucasian, and this has put much of the anger in the music. He forced his way into the industry, he reached success when he partnered with his mentor, Dr. Dre, and together they created the Marshal Mathers LP, which won three Grammies and was nominated "Album of the Year," which had never before happened for a rap album. Whether or not Eminem produces another album, he has impacted the rap industry and produced many popular music videos and albums.

Eminem Trivia
- Eminem had knee surgery, which causes his awkward stance
- As a boy, Marshall wanted to draw comic books
- Eminem wears glasses
- The artist has millions, yet cuts his own hair
- He is the only Caucasian to ever be on the cover of XXL or The Source
- Sports a tattoo of his daughter, Haile Jade, on his right shoulder
- Has one child and custody of a niece named Lainie

Eminem may be known for his music, but a lifetime of rejection, first by his father, than by the school system, and finally by the rapping world, made his music what it is. The next time you watch a music video from Eminem, you will do so with a little more knowledge of the man who is performing for you.


Running Tips - Listening To Music On The Run

Music is great to listen to when you are out running. You need to be smart if you are listening to music as you run - but it can help you in several ways. Read on for reasons why you might want to listen to music on the run - and how to do it safely.

Listening to music is a great way to help you to get through those longer training runs. You can get lost in the music and forget how tired you may be getting. Many runners get focused on their music and forget any discomfort that they may be feeling from their run. Getting lost in their music helps many runners to get rid of any negative thoughts that creep into their minds during the latter stages of their run - those "I can't do this", "I want to stop" thoughts. Listening to music is a great to stay positive.

Another great way to get your mind off of any negative thoughts is to have books or some sort of training materials downloaded to your mp3 player. You get lost in what's going on in your book and then all at once you've completed your run. It really does work.

Music can help energize you during your run - no matter how far you're running. There are many times when you may be out on your run and you come to that big hill that always intimidates you. Or you may be trying to run the last mile of your run faster than your previous miles. And, then, the theme from Rocky (or whatever song motivated you) comes on. You'll be surprised how much that can motivate you and give you the little boost that you need.

Even though I highly recommend running while listening to something, you also need to remember to do it wisely. Don't be blasting your music. You want to have it at a volume level where you can still hear what's going on around you. I listen to my player almost every run - but I can still hear oncoming cars and dogs.

You want to get lost in your music - but not so much that you quit paying attention to your surroundings. Make sure that you are still paying attention to everything going on around you.

Think about what songs motivate you. It may even be a type of music. My mp3 player is full of Rocky songs (Eye Of The Tiger, etc.), 70's Arena Rock and Disco. Don't laugh; the beat in Disco songs is great for runners. But, whatever gets you moving - load it onto your player. Try it - see how it will motivate you.


How To Know You've Found Great Jazz Music

Everyone seems to love jazz music but often times the styles of jazz are confused and blurred. To further complicate matters, listeners (and dancers) often ask "What is great jazz?" or "How do I know if what I'm listening to is 'great jazz'"?

It's difficult to put in words, but let's give it a try. Remember jazz legend Louis Armstrong says: "If you have to ask what jazz is, you'll never know." While jazz can be broken into elements and much has been written on jazz theory, the most important thing to keep in mind is that the spirit that characterizes truly great music can't be dissected. The first rule of thumb of identifying great jazz music is that if you like it, if it touches your soul, then it's great.

Think of it this way - when you walk into an art gallery or museum and ask to see a great painting or sculpture, what is the museum guide supposed to show you? Art is personal! Even worse, ask an artist to explain his or her painting to you. Great art is not meant to be explained. It either hits you, or it doesn't. It bypasses the left part of the brain that analyzes and categorizes things and goes straight to the right part of your brain that feels emotion and connects to your heart and soul. Music speaks to you in the same way.

Now as for the technicality of what you're hearing, that's a bit different. Jazz can be broken into many styles, including traditional jazz, contemporary jazz, progressive jazz, modern jazz, dixieland jazz. Nevertheless, there are still six elements that really comprise all great jazz music, and we've named them Improvisation, Syncopation, Blue Notes, Freedom, Interaction, and Feeling.

IMPROVISATION: is the heart of jazz music. When a performer leaves what is written on the page and begins to "speak" (musically) from his head and heart you are now witnessing a conversation, perhaps even participating through a sonic dance. What is really happening is that the musicians are conversing with each other but within a given structure (or language). When the musicians know each other well enough (and it can be instantaneous or take years to develop), then they are able to understand, support and converse thru that language.

SYNCOPATION: deals with the idea of rhythm. In our universe of space and time, everything vibrates. Vibration consist of two things: on and off. It is the constant interaction of the on and off (crests and troughs) that cause us to experience the universe. Those on and offs are expressed over time. So here's the jazz music. When you fool around with those vibrations from a very rigid form (strict rhythm) to either slower or faster but with variety you'll get "Syncopation". It's fun. It's what you like in music. It's what you're relating to when you dance. It's what MOVES you in jazz music.

BLUE NOTES are an important part of a jazz musician's vocabulary in the musical conversation. Within scales and keys can be certain altered notes, some of which are called "Blue Notes." Blue notes are key to creating dissonance and harmony, tension and resolution.

The following three elements are less a function of music but come more directly from a musician's spirit. How the following three affect the previous three are what really defines "taste" in jazz music.

FREEDOM: Within the ensemble framework, musicians may take solos. Or you may hear a vocalist interpreting a melody - that's pretty much the same thing for the purposes of this discussion. It is that very freedom expressed within the language of music that lead to jazz. It's the talent and skill of a musician to express those feelings that lead to GREAT Jazz. Hey, the old sayings still apply. "Live Free or Die!"

INTERACTION: No man is an island. OK, that's not to mean their are not great jazz soloists such as pianists, harpist, guitarists or other instrumentalist, but the overwhelming majority of jazz music ranges from duos to ensembles of say 20 musicians (Think big band jazz).

For the finale, so to speak: FEELING. Feeling is a key element because when all is said and done, feeling is really the heart of it all. How the musician feels about what he's playing and how you feel about what you're listening to are both important elements, as well as the feelings that are being expressed from moment to moment. In the end, great jazz music is about expressing (for the musician) and hearing (for the audience) the great range of human emotion.

Finally, a definition of great jazz? Let's say it's the interaction between performer and listener. And if that interaction communicates feelings that you can't express as words, if you feel as though the music speaks to you, if you can feel the performers emotions he's trying to express thru his instrument, then the only words left are "That's GREAT jazz"!


Popular Music in the Movies: Creates Accessibility to the Film

The use of popular music in the movies is a creative way to connect the viewers to the movie. Having popular music in the movies catches the attention of the public right away. As a result, using popular music in the movies has brought the movies closer to viewers and it has brought them to the cinema to actually watch the movies.

A Little History on the Use of Popular Music in the Movies

The use of music in movies is very common. In fact, with the exception of silent movies, movies would always have music in them. Many movies used songs that were already popular before the movies. Other songs got popular after the movies became a hit.

The use of popular music in the movies actually started in the early years of the 20th century. And songs used in the movies really became popular. They became the most played songs in radio stations. And around 1998, a survey even came out with a result that the popular music in the movies and in Broadway composes 80% of the most performed songs.

At the start of using popular music in movies, many people argued how unsuitable it was for the movies. But the use of popular music in the movies has really helped both the movies and the music as well.

Why Use Popular Music in the Movies

Again using popular music in the movies keeps the movies on top of mind on the viewers. This helps advertise the movies. Popular music is used in movies because it is easy to remember. The songs used in movies do not have to be complicated or anything. What's important is that the song is hummable. The tune needs to be easy to remember. The song should also be easy to sing so viewers can hum the melody and sing the song even after they watch the movie.

The Use of Popular Music in the Movies Today

Today the songs used are movies are even compiled. And most of the time, these compilations gets a very good demand when the movies do well in theaters.

Again popular music really helps the movies because of its popularity. Since most of the time the music is already recognized by many people, it is truly a good way to capture the attention of the viewers.

So the truth really is that the use of popular music in the movies helps both the movies and the music. It gives sales and air time to the music and it brings more movie viewers to the cinema.


Most Popular Music Videos of All Time

With music videos being as popular as ever, choosing the top videos of all time is an ongoing chore since new videos are being produced daily. Some music videos that you think should have made the top five won't be there and not because they were not good or even creative, but simply because they did not hold that uniqueness needed to be one of the top five. So with this in mind, please go through our choices and see if you agree with who we picked.

Number 5: "Just" - Radiohead
Director: Jamie Thraves in 1995

The mystery of what the guy says at the very end of the video is right up there with the Cadbury secret! Even after 14 years, we are still unsure and the director and band remain hush- hush about what is said. None of the group wants to reveal what has happened to the video's hero that makes him disconnect himself from the world around him and sit on the pavement. Perhaps they are not sure what is said themselves and after all this time are in the great debate about the final words.

Number 4: "Take On Me" - A-Ha
Director: Steve Barron in 1985

This band had limited success but this hit was one of the first examples of how MTV was a powerful enough force to take a video clip that started at nothing and took it to number one. The video actually depicts a story and is one of the first following that format. The concept used was unique and clever for its time.

Number 3: "Atmosphere" - Joy Divison
Director: Anton Corbjin in 1988

A bit on the bizarre side, children and/or midgets dressed in Druid costume conduct a funeral on a beach. At first it seems like a tribute done in poor taste to a late singer and drifter, but the melodies and macabre rhythms mesmerize those viewing this video. After watching further, the visuals make more sense. The black and white cinematography and still shots make it seem like Division is a fading memory. The video reaches those who have ever lost a loved one and that moment they go outside to see the world still bright and functioning, unaffected by their loss. The video is one you will not soon forget.

Number 2: "Hurt" - Johnny Cash
Director: Mark Romanek in 2003

No one can dispute Cash's reputation and accomplishments as well as his contributions to American music and its history. In his video Cash portrays a number of "faces" to signify his various stages in life over the years; the husband, the father, the rebel, the man in black, even the lonely old man. It is probably the most appropriate way to celebrate his career and commemorate it all at the same time.

Number 1: "Rabbit in Your Headlights" - U.N.K.L.E. featuring Thom Yorke
Director: Jonathan Glazer in 1998

At first appearance, the video may seem to be a bit of a laugh to one who is not paying attention. A decrepit old vagrant is trying to make his way through traffic and getting creamed by vehicles, only to get back up and go at it again. Once you get past that and really sit down to watch it, the video takes on a different tone and gives a message. This video is cryptic, emotionally powerful, and difficult for a person to watch without being emotionally moved.


Finding Indie Music on the Internet

Have you ever had the classic experience with a close friend who tells you about a great song and is very confident that you will love it just as much as he or she does? Upon listening to it, you begin to question the trust you have in them, and no longer have faith in their musical opinions. I've had this experience one too many times and I say let modern technology succeed where friends have failed!

Finding Music Online

There are several online resources available which are much more intuitive than a friend, and can "learn" your music preferences and make suggestions for new music suited to your tastes. These suggestions are tailored to your musical preference history and are pulled from some of the world's largest online collections of tagged music. Radio stations almost always have to play corporate-backed bands with label restriction which makes them a bad avenue to find more obscure music.

Online sources are you best bet for finding the best music available. Pulling from a huge compilation of online music, you have access to tons of new music in the genres you want and based on your listening history rather than getting a random suggestion from some weird friend who has an obsession with a local Rush tribute band who couldn't hit the right notes even if they were sober.

The music-bots are smarter than your friends, and have a slightly different learning capacity. Looking for indie music? Up and coming local and underground musicians get suggested and listed every day and with good ratings from other users, you can use these tools to be introduced to bands and musicians through a new avenue.

What Are My Options?

Pandora is a free online radio project that generates music suggestions based on a profile you create, where you list your favorite artists and genres. Pandora uses a comprehensive database known as the Music Genome Project, to find and match user music preferences with related music. Just go to www.pandora.com, create a profile, and start listening.

Last.fm also has a unique way of gathering preferences to suggest new music to a listener. Users download a plug-in application that will make suggestions based on your listening history. It keeps track of the music you listen to (your current favorite artists) in a process called "scrobbling" and creates your individual music profile based off of that information.

The profile is then compared with the music listening history of millions of other Last.fm users to find listeners with similar tastes, and suggestions for new artists and bands are given based off of that comparison. Last.fm already has over 15 million+ active users to base suggestions from. Visit www.last.fm and let them expose you to the best new music.

Yahoo!'s LAUNCHcast has a similar structure to Last.fm, but lacks a comprehensive music profile list because it has a smaller network of users. LAUNCHcast also seems to offer a more limited library, with more mainstream music than Last.fm does. This seems quite similar to the way that corporate-owned radio stations provide music.

Another resource features unsigned or independent artists that would not be able to reach their potential fan base unless they ended up getting a major record deal and/or corporate sponsorship. Try www.purevolume.com to get into the online indie scene and of course, MySpace always works too.

Most of these sites also make it very easy to purchase your recently discovered music once you decide you like it, so you can add it to your ever-growing collection of music and turn it up!


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