Once upon a time, Eminem proudly proclaimed himself the king of controversy, “the worst thing since Elvis Presley,” and the bad guy who makes fun of people that die. In fact, songs like “Kill You,” “Kim,” “Drips,” and even more recent selections like “Stay Wide Awake” pushed the envelope, especially in a climate driven by adherence to political correctness.
However, his recent stance has come a long way since “Guilty Conscience,” in which he gleefully encouraged poor Grady to shoot his adulterous spouse in the head. In the wake of tragedies like Sandy Hook and Parkland, Eminem has doubled down on his anti-gun message, culminating in songs like “Nowhere Fast” and “Like Home.” Though some lament his apparent softening, others argue that troubled times merit a more optimistic bard. Unfortunately, this past weekend during a Bonnaroo performance, a pyrotechnic explosion caused a slight hysteria among concert goers, who feared the worst.
While Em has been implementing those sounds in his set for years now, the recent epidemic of shootings in America has the public on edge. Therefore, it didn’t take long before Eminem’s camp felt compelled to address the issue, in a message delivered by Em’s longtime manager Paul Rosenberg. In true Shady fashion, Paul refused to join the apology tour, instead offering an explanation to the incident:
“Contrary to inaccurate reports, @Eminem does not use gunshot sound effects during his live show. The effect used by Eminem in his set at @bonnaroo was a pyrotechnic concussion which creates a loud boom. He has used this effect — as have hundreds other artists — in his live show for over 10 years, including previous US festival dates in 2018 without complaint.”