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Eminem returns with a book and a song

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Missing in action for close to two years, rapper Eminem, 36, is making a comeback with a new album and a memoir.

Titled The Way I Am, book is to be released in the US on Tuesday, the Detroit Free Press reports.

The new album is called Relapse, and will be the rapper’s first release since 2005′s not-so-aptly named greatest hits compilation, Curtain Call. Eminem’s last original album was Encore, in 2004.

New $40 coffee-table book is part autobiography, part archival history. It’s an attempt to reveal the “real” Marshall Mathers through pictorial sketches and commentary.

Excerpt from Eminem’s new book The Way I Am

Some of the more newsworthy passages from our exclusive excerpt of The Way I Am:

On his infamous mood swings:

My mood can change quickly. It’s always been that way. When I was drinking, I could be in a good mood just loving everybody and feeling like everything was great then somebody would say the wrong s— to me, and before you knew it there was nothing my bodyguards could do to stop me from reacting and at least punching, spitting, or kicking a few times before they could get to me.”

On the Triumph/Moby/Christina incident at the VMA Awards several years ago:

You all saw the Triumph thing go down at the MTV Video Music Awards, right? That’s a pretty perfect example …I’ve got Moby behind me, and Christina [Aguilera] up onstage, and then this dog puppet gets up in my face. I’d been so busy touring and doing my own s— that I hadn’t had time to watch TV, so I had no idea what that dog was. All I saw was Moby and Christina and this dude who’s sticking his hand in my face, trying to be funny …My natural reaction was, ‘Get the f— out of my face. Get your f—ing hand out of my face.’ And that’s when I kind of lost it and a half …I stuck my fingers basically on Moby’s nose. Right in his face, like, ‘F— you’ …The thing is, in the hip-hop world, when you talk about someone, you might not want to see them, because you don’t know what’s going to happen. With Moby …my instinct was, someone talks about you, you see them, you fight. But Moby? Really? I was going to fight Moby? I was going to fight a puppet? In hindsight, I should have handled it differently, and I truly believe that if I were in that situation again, knowing the whole shtick with the puppet dog, I would have acted differently. What I actually got mad about was the most ridiculous thing in the world. A puppet.”

On how he’s changed and the importance of family:

This problem is not something I’m proud of. I mean, I’m a lot better than I used to be …but it’s still messed up. I’m 35 years old. I’m a dad now. Once you hit 30, you’re supposed to at least be a half-grown-ass man, you know what I mean? The truth is, a lot of things put me on edge …It can be something as simple as being asked a million stupid questions, or a rapper who’s not on my level trying to come up by starting beef with me …God knows, 10 years down the road I don’t want my daughters hearing about all this some¬where and going, ‘He thinks it’s cool to act like this.’ Because I don’t. But, you know, when you grow up like I did—bouncing around, fighting for everything—it does make you angry …It was almost a way for me piss back in the face of the people who pissed on me all my life—to get back at every bully who ever picked on me, every person who ever f—ed with me growing up. The fact that Hailie’s life is so differ¬ent than mine is one of my proudest achievements … The stakes are high, and my family comes first. Marshall Mathers behind bars isn’t cute, and Eminem behind bars is terrible for business.”

On gun violence:

Guns and violence have been around me my whole life—in my family life, in my social life, everywhere. I’ve just always had a fascination with them. I’m not saying I was a thug or that I dealt drugs or murdered people. That’s just how I was raised—step up or get stepped on—so I never really thought it was a problem, you know? Anybody who has a gun will tell you that at first it makes them feel powerful. I was infatuated. Obviously I don’t feel that way now. I’ve lost too many friends, family members, loved ones to gun violence. I would much rather use my fists. (Kidding.)”

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October 20th, 2008

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