Eminem Had to ‘Relearn’ to Rap After Drug Overdose

Eminem recalls a time when he had to “relearn” his craft following a drug overdose.

While discussing a leaked track from over a decade ago, on which he sides with Chris Brown in the wake of his 2009 assault of Rihanna, the Detroit rapper apologized to his “Love the Way You Lie” collaborator and admitted that he was going through a difficult period following his near-fatal overdose in 2007 when he had to teach himself to rap again.

“I have zero recollection of even remembering doing that verse,” he told Gray Rizzy on SiriusXM’s Shade 45. “Like the rhyme schemes didn’t even sound like familiar to me. So I was caught off-guard too. I was like, ‘What the f**k, I said that?’ That was during early stages of the Relapse record that I was working on.”

He continued to address the controversy. “It’s 10-plus years old, but not making excuses for it. I said it and I was wrong for saying that. It was fu**ing stupid. You know, a lot of times, especially with the Relapse record, when I first started learning how to rap again, because of the drug situation that I went through and having to relearn a lot of things, that was one of those things that it was like, ‘Well, if it rhymes, say it.'”

The leaked verse, on which he raps “Of course I side with Chris Brown, I’d beat a bitch down too,” appeared on an unreleased version of B.o.B.’s “Things Get Worse,” which was a leftover from his Relapse recording sessions.

While he doesn’t defend the disrespectful lyrics, Eminem insists that it wasn’t purposeful. “I think that being able to look back, I mean, that’s not even an excuse, but I’m just saying like that there was a phase I was going through with that Relapse record. I don’t know. It was one of those things. I think I just said it cause it rhymed. And I think I’m sure looking back now, I should have thought better of it.”

He issued an apology to Rihanna on “Zeus” off the Side B deluxe reissue of Music to Be Murdered By. “But, me, long as I re-promise to be honest / And wholeheartedly, apologies, Rihanna,” he raps. “For that song that leaked / I’m sorry, Rih / It wasn’t meant to cause you grief / Regardless, it was wrong of me.”

Elsewhere in his Shade 45 interview, Em also brought up Snoop Dogg, who caught Em off-guard when he said he could “live without” his music.

“I think it was more about the tone he was using that caught me off-guard ’cause I’m like, where is this coming from? I just saw you, what the f**k? It threw me for a loop,” he explained. “I probably could’ve gotten past the whole tone and everything, but it was the last statement where he said, ‘Far as music I can live without, I can live without that shit.’ Now you’re being disrespectful. It just caught me off-guard.”

On “Zeus,” Em fired back at Snoop: “Last thing I need is Snoop doggin’ me / Man, dog, you was like a damn God to me / Man, not really / I had dog backwards.”