Tuesday, November 21, 2000

Eminem charts with “Stan”

Last updated 3/22/2020.

Stan

Eminem with Dido

Writer(s): Eminem, Dido, Paul Herman (see lyrics here)


Released: November 21, 2000


First Charted: October 7, 2000


Peak: 51 US, 31 RR, 36 RB, 11 UK, 27 CN, 11 AU (Click for codes to singles charts.)


Sales (in millions): 2.0 US, 1.47 UK, 5.0 world (includes US + UK)


Airplay/Streaming (in millions): -- radio, 412.4 video, -- streaming

Awards:

About the Song:

“There are few songs as blindly fascinating and striking as this” SY “compelling look at the pitfalls of fame, and the the danger of becoming obsessed with our heroes.” PD “Rapper Eminem cemented his artistic standing” AB’00 with this “fictional…but frighteningly real” PD story of a deranged fan who sends “a series of unhinged letters.” RS’09

This “creepy hit… encapsulated the dramatic flair that made Eminem so impossible to ignore in 2000.” RS’09 “Even now…[it is] funnier and more shocking than 99 percent of mainstream hip-hop.” MX It is a “raw, beautiful…tragedy without melodrama.” SY It was “instantly fascinating…on first listen [in] how it could take such a cute, pedestrian verse to symbolize an obsessive fan’s descent into madness and self-destruction [and] how Eminem’s rap could sound so realistic, like he’s a friend telling you this story.” SY

Malcolm McLaren’s 1984 song “Fans” appears to be the basis of “Stan” in both its structure and story, complete with an opera aria excerpt instead of the samples pulled from Dido’s song “Thank You,” a song which then became a hit in its own right. SF Em also references his own work when Stan says, “I drank a fifth of vodka, dare me to drive?,” a line from “My Name Is.” Stan also references an untrue rumor that Phil Collins’ “In the Air Tonight” was written by Collins when he witnessed a man stand by and do nothing while someone drowned. The legend says Collins invited the man to one of his concerts and sang it to him. SF

Eminem had to deal with charges of being anti-gay because in one of Stan’s letters, he writes about wanting to be with Eminem, who replies that it makes him not want to meet Stan. In response, Eminem enlisted the openly gay Elton John to play piano and sing Dido’s part at the 2001 Grammys. SF


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