Not Afraid: The Shady Records Story

Not Afraid: The Shady Records Story

2015, Performing Arts  -   11 Comments
Ratings: 8.42/10 from 134 users.

The new millennium brought forth a tidal shift in the music industry and one artist stood tallest in that transformation. Marshall Mathers, more commonly known as Eminem, swept the global music scene with his unique phrasing, infectious productions, and almost uncomfortably confessional lyrics. The new documentary Not Afraid: The Shady Records Story, produced by Complex Media, traces the meteoric rise of Eminem through his solo efforts, high-profile collaborations, and the formation of his own company Shady Records.

The origins of Eminem's career as rap superstar began under the tutelage of Dr. Dre, who exposed his young protégé to the possibilities of music production, and the creation of a consistently provocative sonic experience which carries over the course of an entire album. Another early collaborative influence was Paul Rosenberg, a budding music manager who always dreamed of starting his own record label. Hitting it off with Eminem upon their first meeting in 1997, the two would make that dream a reality two years later with the founding of Shady Records. Their partnership is sketched in the classic creative-managerial mold; Eminem lives for the studio, crafting the most appealing and provocative beats he can conjure, while Rosenberg works to refine the image of their company, and markets each production to reach the most receptive masses.

The film's portrait of the creative behemoth at its center - Eminem - is particularly revealing. Surprisingly loyal and humble, Eminem uses his company's platform to sign many incredibly unique and talented artists who started with him long before fame hit, and his contributions have catapulted their musical success into the stratosphere. In spite of the mountains of accolades and awards of recognition he's received over the course of his career, he refuses to rest on his laurels. His quest for the next defining album, and his reliance on remaining true to his own unique perspective, continually drive him to greater depths of artistic expression.

Featuring insights from Dr. Dre, 50 Cent, as well as Eminem and Rosenberg, Not Afraid: The Shady Records Story examines the trajectory of a record label that went from boutique status to a full-fledged hit factory. In the process, Eminem, accompanied by his carefully recruited roster of artists and other creatives, continues to change the face of music.

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6 years ago

I love how the whitest man in America is the best rapper ever hahahaha

7 years ago

A short and brief yet entertaining look at the Shady Records story,with some famous and not so famous names strutting their stuff.Well worth a look.

8 years ago

I'm not sure if they were trying to make a point or something in this 'documentary'... it's interesting, but there must be better ones about eminem. worth the watch, but only because it was 30 minutes and not 2 hours.

Amunet Amun
8 years ago

This is one of the best music documentaries I have seen in a while. It did keep pausing and trying to load which was a bit distractful, but I hung in there and finished watching. Eminem, Dr. Dre, and some other other acts are extremely talented. I do have to admit I am a fan...

8 years ago

Eminem is a very rare phenomenon in hip hop and rap worlds, he has changed alot of things in Music, he is smart and funny, he is one of the most gifted and talented rappers in all the times, I bet that generations in the future will play his music and say : Wow lucky those who were being living in his time!!!

8 years ago

I must of liked it, because i watched it again, this morning. I can't imagine, even if I didn't get into rap(as much as I like pretty much every music genre); that I wouldn't have still enjoyed this(but who knows). It's just a fun, well produced/directed, even heartfelt watch. Ok, I'm's really not that big of a deal lol. Even though, they don't hint at how classic the infinite album was/is. But, he really did bust the game loose, when he met up with dre...can't be denied, imo. I'm no stan of em, anymore than i am; of any other artists that I admire for creativity or w/e reason i may, btw. But, screw em lol. This doc on it's own, is a decent piece to me. Anyways...wicca wicca check it out lol.

8 years ago

Em said Paul wasn't there to censor him, but talked him off of the edge a few times(a slight contradiction, but who cares lol). That line, exemplifies what i liked most about this doc: the rapport between Em and Paul, that the film captured. But, it was worth a watch, imo.

8 years ago

,,,this didn't seem all...I gave it five...I jumped through this short "documentary" not "fair" right..? Not interesting....

Janeen Clark
8 years ago

Not sure about all that but he's a good rapper for show.