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Eminem created his alter ego Slim Shady while sitting on the toilet

After being inspired by the failure of his debut album Infinite, Eminem thought of his infamous alter-ego “Slim Shady” while sitting on the toilet. Eminem’s toilet-born character inspired a new sound for him, it led to his debut EP, 1997’s The Slim Shady EP and his second album, 1999’s The Slim Shady LP which introduced the world to Eminem’s dark new alter ego.

After Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre got their hands on a copy of The Slim Shady EP—through an Interscope employee who attended the Rap Olympics that Eminem was battling at in Los Angeles—they signed Eminem to Aftermath Records and Interscope Records. Two years later, Eminem released his major label debut album The Slim Shady LP, executively produced by Dr. Dre and under Interscope Records. The Slim Shady LP‘s second single “My Name Is” catapulted Eminem to a wider nation audience and made him a superstar.

During a 2008 interview with Zane Lowe for BBC Radio 1, Eminem explained how he thought of his alter-ego “Slim Shady” on the toilet.

“This is not a lie, I was sitting on the toilet and a lot of good material came out of that… This name pops into my head. I was kind of skinny and I thought maybe it should be something slim. And then for some reason Slim Shady popped into my mind and I just thought of 20 things to rhyme with it.”

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