Essentially a German Eminem -- a comparison that extends far past the color of their skin -- rapper Sido ran afoul of legislators, parents, and good taste via graphic lyrics trafficking in misogyny, violence, and sex. Born Paul Würdig in Berlin on November 30, 1980, he originally derived the name Sido from the phrase "Schieße in dein ohr," or "Sh*t in your ears." In later years, however, he claimed it instead originated from "Super-intelligentes drogenopfer," or "Super-intelligent drug victim." Completing his public persona with an omnipresent silver skull mask, Sido in 2004 signed to the Aggro Berlin label to issue his debut LP, Maske. An enormous popular hit, the album sold close to 200,000 copies largely on the strength of the single "Mein Block," which documents urban crime and despair in the Märkisches Viertel neighborhood the rapper calls home. The track "Arschificksong" --a grim and exploitative portrait of an abusive sexual encounter -- nevertheless brought Sido to the attention of Germany's Federal Office for Media Harmful to Young Persons, although the song was not added to their index of obscene or dangerous materials. The ensuing controversy inevitably vaulted Sido to greater media renown, setting the stage for his sophomore effort, Ich, issued in late 2006. ~ Jason Ankeny, Rovi