Marshall Bruce Mathers III (born October 17, 1972), better known by his stage name Eminem, is an American rapper, record producer, and actor. Eminem is the best-selling hip hop artist of all-time and the best-selling artist of the 2000s with U.S. album sales at over 32.2 million during the decade and worldwide album sales standing at over 80 million. Eminem has sold over thirty-five million albums in the United States as a solo artist and has earned forty-two platinum certifications from the RIAA.
In 1996, Eminem released his first studio album, “Infinite,” under Web Entertainment. The album sold about a thousand copies and failed to rank on national charts. After signing a contract with Interscope Records and Aftermath Entertainment, the rapper released his sophomore and commercial debut album “The Slim Shady LP” in 1999 and reached the #2 spot on the Billboard 200, and received four platinum certifications in the United States from the RIAA. "The Slim Shady LP" won a Grammy Award for Best Rap Album.
In the subsequent year, Eminem released his third studio album “The Marshall Mathers LP,” which sold 1.76 million copies in its first week of distribution, breaking records for the fastest-selling hip hop album of all-time and the fastest-selling solo album in the United States. With more than ten million copies sold, the album was the third best-selling record of the year in the United States, where it also earned nine platinum certifications. The lead single, "The Real Slim Shady," became Eminem's first song to enter in the top ten of the Billboard Hot 100. "Stan" was the most successful single outside of the States, while it failed to reach the top fifty in the rapper's home country.
In 2002, Eminem's fourth album, “The Eminem Show,” debuted at #1 on the Billboard 200 and reached the top spot on various charts internationally as it went on to sell over nineteen million copies worldwide. In the United States, “The Eminem Show” was the highest-selling album of the year, with sales of almost ten million copies. The album received eight platinum certifications from the RIAA. In the same year, Eminem's "Lose Yourself," from the “8 Mile” soundtrack, became the rapper's first #1 song on the Hot 100 and remained on the top for twelve weeks. The song also reached the top of various national charts worldwide. The “8 Mile” soundtrack peaked to the #1 position in the United States, where it sold more than four million of the nine million copies distributed internationally.
"The Marshall Mathers LP" and his third album, "The Eminem Show," also won Grammy Awards, making Eminem the first artist to win Best Rap Album for three consecutive LPs.
In 2004, Eminem's fifth studio album “Encore” became the rapper's third consecutive studio album to reach #1 in the United States, Australia, Canada, New Zealand and United Kingdom. Sales reached five million sold copies in the United States and eleven million worldwide.
In 2005 Eminem released a greatest hits album “Curtain Call: The Hits,” which sold almost three million copies in the U.S. and received a double platinum certification from RIAA. In the following year, Shady Records released “Eminem Presents: The Re-Up,” a compilation album performed by Eminem along with various artists from the record label. The album received a platinum certification from the RIAA in 2007 and sold slightly over a million copies in the United States.
In 2009, the song "Crack a Bottle," a collaboration with label-mates Dr. Dre and 50 Cent, became Eminem's second #1 on the Hot 100 and broke the record for opening week download sales in the United States, with 418,000 copies sold in the first week.
After a break of more than four years, “Relapse,” Eminem's sixth studio album, was released in 2009 and was the rapper's fourth consecutive studio album to once again top the Australia, Canada, New Zealand, United Kingdom and U.S. as well as various worldwide charts, with domestic sales of over two million copies.
In 2010, Eminem released his seventh studio album “Recovery,” which debuted at #1 on the Billboard 200 and reached the top spot on various charts internationally. “Recovery” singles "Not Afraid" and "Love the Way You Lie" featuring Rihanna became the rapper's third and fourth #1 songs on the Hot 100, the latter also reached the top of various national charts worldwide.
To date, Eminem has 4 songs that have sold over 3 million downloads in the United States. Eminem has sold more than 17 million track downloads in the United States alone.