The world looked much different 15 years ago.
At the time, people were just getting over the whole Y2K scare. Bill Clinton was still our president. “Gladiator,” “Almost Famous,” “Memento” and “American Psycho” all dropped that year. Nelly taught us "Country Grammar." Destiny’s Child was still a group. Aailyah’s “Try Again” was poppin’. *Nsync, Christina Aguilera and Britney Spears were runnin’ the pop game. And it was also an incredible year for Marshall Mathers.
Back then, Eminem was getting ready to release his now-classic The Marshall Mathers LP. His Stans would log onto his website for every bit of Slim information. You have to remember that Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and Snapchat didn't exist so www.eminem.com became home base for Em supporters. So, as 2015 winds down, we decided to look back at what 2000 was like for Shady fans through the powers of WayBackMachine. This is what we found.
This is what Eminem's homepage looked like back in 2000.
The Music: There were a few album tracks you could preview on this page (not all of them actually became album cuts, though). There was also a video section — Em TeeVee — and another song section -- Em-P3. This offered fans an early look at what YouTube, Vevo, Apple Music and SoundCloud would eventually become for die-hards. How did we manage back then? Like this.
T-Shirts: You see that (now vintage) shirt that's for sale? Shady Stans were copping those like crazy back in 2000. Afraid you can't find it anymore? Don't trip. You can still cop a similar one from Eminem's website for $25.
Chronic 2001: There’s a promo for Dr. Dre there, too. This was after Em and Dre proved to be a dynamic duo on The Slim Shady LP and 2001, so that makes sense.
Em's bio appears in the bio page (duh). You see less and less of this these days, but back in 2000, a bio was a must-have on every MC's website. Em's was informative. It provided some key details about Marshall's life and also insight from Shady.
"I do say things that I think will shock people," he said in one of the bio's quotes. "But I don't do things to shock people. I'm not trying to be the next Tupac, but I don't know how long I'm going to be on this planet. So while I'm here, I might as well make the most of it."
That's particularly interesting given Slim's career trajectory, how influential he's become and how long he's been rapping for. It's also compelling given the love Em's shared for 2Pac this year alone.
As you can see from the gif up there, Em's website kept fans up to date. When was he going to shoot a music video? All you had to do was log on to the website to find out. What was happening with D-12 or Dr. Dre? The website had that stuff, too.
Behind The Scenes Stories: But beyond the touring, video shooting and album release date info, the site also offered glimpses behind-the-scenes. For example, did you know that MMLP was meant to feature a tribute to Em's late uncle Ronnie?
"They both started getting into rap music at the same time, and used to practice early recordings as a loose 'group,' with the two of them beatboxing and freestyling on cheap home recordings," the site explained. "Em came across one of the tapes recently, and asked his grandmother, Ronnie's mother, whether he could use the cassette on his next album as a tribute to Ronnie. At first, she said fine. After a dispute over a separate matter with Em, she said 'no way' and threatened to sue him if he used it. THAT'S IT! The album hasn't been completed, the tape was never added, it was just an idea. If his grandmother won't let him use the tape and pay tribute to her deceased son, so be it. It won't be used."
Boy Band Hatred: On a lighter note (for those who are anti boy bands anyway), Em's site also dissed pop groups with the same passion Shady did.
"The big day is coming, 9/9/99," one entry said. "Watch Shady's performance with Dr. Dre (and a surprise guest) on the '99 MTV Video Music Awards. And won't you all be happy to see N'Suck and Wackstreet Boys take home all the moon men? If Shady doesn't win one, its up to you guys to send all the rotten eggs to 1515 B'Way. (just kidding, really...)"
Since Wikipedia exists, it's also hard to find one of these discographies on an artist's website these days. But back then, these pages allowed fans to see exactly what an artist had made and when. Since it came from the source, you felt you could trust it.
Em's discography (at the time) featured some of Em's earliest recordings, including Infinite. It also went into the MC's rare one-off cuts, tracks that might just be on an up-and-coming MC's SoundCloud page but not on an album. This helped die-hards keep track of what they had and what they needed.
The Photo Gallery
Think of this as Eminem's Instagram in 2000. Sadly, a lot of the images don't show up anymore, which proves not everything on the Internet lives forever. There are only a handful of classic photos left on the site and even those are kind of blurry. It's hard to know exactly when they disappeared. So, I guess it's also like Em's Snapchat if you think of it as a long story that may have disappeared at some point in the last 15 years.
Em's Website Today
This is what the website looks like today. Yeah, there have been changes. There's no Em-TeeVee and no Em-P3, anymore. There's no bio. There's no discography page. But there are still a lot of features on the websites. It's just different. That's life. But what hasn't changed is Em's still making music. He helped drop the Southpaw soundtrack this year and fans have to be hopeful that he's got a tour or an album in store for 2016.