Almost 318 million views of this video, just on YouTube. We talk about Toy Soldiers, Eminem’s track from his fifth album, Encore (2004). The song was one of the most appreciated by the critics, most probably for the theme dealt with, and particularly heard by the author himself.

In the song Like a Toy Soldiers, Marshall Bruce Mathers III, known as Eminem, talks about the rap community and its challenges. It is quite normal in fact between rappers “insulting” each other in their songs, a bit ironically but always with rules to respect. Those which many call the “street rules”, never written but whose limits everyone knows.

Overcoming limits: insulting the daughter

Toy Soldiers refers to when these limits are exceeded and then rap can generate violence. In some of these quarrels, rappers have even lost their lives. In the video, in fact, Tupac Shakur, Notorious B. I. G, Big L and the former D12 member, Bugz, are shown as examples of rappers really killed by the violence of these stupid contention.

Eminem makes you meditate by comparing rappers to soldiers. Because after all, with their songs who really earns money are the big record companies, the only ones to profit from their diatribes. When Eminem says: “I heard him say Hailie’s name in a song I just lost it,” he refers to the fact that rapper Ja Rule and Benzino mentioning his daughter in their songs, they did actually surpass any limit by insulting a little girl.

Eminem

 

The redemption

 

In 2014 Eminem became the first artist ever to have two digital diamonds, Love the Way You Lie and Not Afraid.  Which respectively have 11 and 10 platinum in the United States. His assets are estimated at $190 million. If we consider his humble origins, his adolescence made of renunciations, quarrelsome in a controversial family context, one can certainly say that Marshall Bruce Mathers III had his redemption. A bit like the origins of the genre rap hip-hop. Words spoken to succeed in winning, born from the desire for redemption of the precursors that can be found in the music of West Africa and African-American music (black music).