Lyrical gangster

posted by Jason Kottke   Oct 23, 2002

I’m beginning to understand what the critics see in Eminem. Contrary to most of Mr. Mathers’ other material — of the look-at-me/fuck-you variety — Lose Yourself, off the soundtrack for 8 Mile, is surprisingly uplifting, positive, and even poignant. Dr. Dre’s beats have always been top notch and they’re put to excellent use here by Eminem with each verse powerfully building to the chorus. The first bit of the song is especially good…everyone is familiar with the feeling of nervous anticipation and potential for failure you experience when attempting something that’s important to you and Eminem captures it perfectly:

snap back to reality
oh, there goes gravity
oh there goes rabbit
he choked, he’s so mad
but he won’t give up that easy
nope he won’t have it
he knows his whole back’s to these ropes
it don’t matter he’s dope
he knows that but he’s broke
he so sad that he knows
when he goes back to this mobile home
that’s when it’s
back to the lab again, yo
this whole rhapsody
better go capture this moment
and hope it don’t pass him (you betta)

lose yourself in the music, the moment, you own it
you better never let it go
you only get one shot
do not miss your chance to blow
cuz this opportunity comes once in a life-time, yo

“lose yourself in the music, the moment, you own it, you better never let it go”…that’s good advice no matter who it’s coming from.