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Speaking recently in an interview with US radio station Power 106's Big Boy, Eminem explained why he felt the desire to write diss tracks aimed at fellow rappers Kanye West and Lil Wayne during a period of musical inactivity, saying, “I think that deep down I just wasn’t happy with myself.”
As HipHopDX writes, when asked about the lyrics “Hatred was flowing through my veins, on the verge of going insane / I almost made a song dissing Lil Wayne” on Talkin’ 2 Myself from 2010's Recovery, Em explained that the lines came out of feelings of inadequacy and feeling threatened.
“When I made [that] record, what I was basically talking about [was] with the time period that I was away. I was kind of watching what was going on in the game and it was like anything that was hot at that moment or anybody who was really killing shit at that moment I felt like… I felt so bad about myself and the music that I was creating, that I felt like I started to turn into a hater,” he said.
“It wasn’t just singling Kanye and Wayne out at that time…they were the ones who were killing it the most to me,” he added. “And it hurt. I’d pop the CD in and be like, ‘Fuck man, I’m not doing this no more.’ I felt like I came very close to like, for me it would have been career suicide because I felt like, ‘I should make a song just dissing everybody who’s doing in it the game right now.’”
However, Em explained that he never actually wrote any explicit diss lyrics aimed at the two rappers, who in that time period had both achieved their respective commercial peaks with Wayne’s Tha Carter III and West’s Graduation, both of which carried international number-one singles.
“I just had the thoughts, just walking around the studio,” said Em. “I think that deep down I just wasn’t happy with myself, man. I knew that there were some really dark moments in there… my thought process was when I was high a lot, it wasn’t good, man, and it certainly wasn’t me.”
The rapper also opened up briefly about the time period between his 2004 album, Encore, and his 2009 comeback album, Relapse. “I never really left the business. Actually, I am the type of person that does [have] to do music. This is my passion… It’s my therapy. It just feels good to get it out.”
He said the time between the two albums was spent “in the lab… trying to reassess my career, what I wanna do, how I wanna sound.” He also explained that he doesn’t know “how long I’m gonna keep doing [music] for” and that he will “take that as it comes,” though insisted, “I do need music.”
Listen: Power 106 LA – “Where Has Eminem Been”
Watch: Eminem ft Lil Wayne – No Love (Explicit Version)