Eminem has revealed he’s quite the collector when it comes to music memorabilia, with the rapper revealing he once dropped $600 on a sealed Nas Illmatic cassette tape.
In a rare appearance on the Clubhouse app in support of his latest venture ShadyCon, Em – real name Marshall Mathers – spoke to longtime manager Paul Rosenberg and DJ Whoo Kid about his impressive collection of memorabilia that he’s amassed over the years.
“I’ve been collecting since I was a kid, everything from comic books to baseball cards to toys, as well as every rap album on cassette I could get my hands on,” Em shared in the chat.
While he listed off a number of items that would have fellow collectors green with envy, it was the sealed cassette of Nas’ 1994 record Illmatic that had everyone most intrigued.
“I think it’s backstock from what records stores had in the back storage,” the Detroit-born MC said, adding that he purchased it for around $500 to $600.
“The tapes that never sold and they just kept them. That’s the only thing I can think of. Cause nobody’s going to have a fucking Illmatic tape and not open it,” Eminem added.
When asked how much cash he thought an opened cassette copy The Slim Shady LP would go for, Em estimated: “Twelve cents.”
It’s not the first time the ‘Real Slim Shady’ rapper has discussed his passion for collecting classic cassette tapes.
Speaking to Zane Lowe, he explained that his obsession stemmed from not being able to afford them as a child.
“When I was a kid, I didn’t have money to buy every tape I ever wanted,” he said to Lowe.
“So usually what we had to do was go to this place called Record Time, and I would take the tape that came out a couple of weeks ago, trade it in for the new tape, whatever else was out.
“Me and my friends would take turns buying the tape and be like, ‘It’s your turn to buy this tape and I get to dub it, and then it’ll be my turn to buy the next tape.’ But it also was like you would dub some shit it’d be like …the air would be like … And you’d hear the air more than the tape,” he continued.
“You’d have to turn it all the way up, and then all you hear is the bass from it and that shit. Yeah, that shit sucked. But I said to myself, ‘If I ever make it one day as a rapper, I’m going to get every tape that I always wanted.’”