“Say Goodbye Hollywood” by Eminem
Throughout the course of his career, Eminem has dropped many a song which may lead some to believe that he doesn’t possess normal human feelings. But on the flip side he occasionally comes out with tracks like this (“Say Goodbye Hollywood”) which, if you can get past the cursing and harsh wording, reveals that he is fundamentally the same as the rest of us.
To illustrate the above argument, consider for instance that “The Eminem Show” features songs like “Superman“, where the rapper depicts himself as an uncaring womanizer. But it also contains tracks such as this one which commences, even if in a roundabout way, based on the love Em feels for his soulmate, Kim.
Indeed Kimberly Anne Scott, who Eminem married twice within a seven-year timespan, has been mentioned on quite a few Slim Shady tracks. According to Eminem, they’ve always had somewhat of a tumultuous relationship.
And the most-jarring moment of this union may have been in 2000 when Slim Shady assaulted some dude he caught smooching on Kim, whom he was married to at the time.
This is an incident which he addressed on at least two other songs from “The Eminem Show” – “Sing for the Moment” and most-expressively “The Kiss (Skit)”.
But the manner in which he alludes to the incident in this particular tune is as it prompting him to perhaps take a break from the spotlight.
Lyrics of “Say Goodbye Hollywood”
And that is the general idea which the phrase “saying goodbye to Hollywood” is meant to lead us to. During this particular juncture in time, Eminem was perpetually in the hot seat, dealing with a plethora of issues coming from all sorts of directions.
In fact according to the beginning of the second verse, it was enough to even make the multi-million dollar celebrity consider suicide. But he concludes that he cannot “give up”.
And his main inspiration for hanging in there would be his daughter Hailie, who was still a small child at the time. And what compels the rapper to take fatherhood so seriously, beside his love for Hailie in general, is the fact that his own dad, Marshall Mathers Jr. (1951-2019), was of the absentee variety. And his pops behaving is such a manner greatly disturbed Eminem. This is something which the rapper has expressed not only on this song but also many others.
Yet and still, the third verse commences with the vocalist implying that he may in fact retire from the game. The rapper goes on to reveal that incidents such as the one elaborated on above, which people read about in the news, aren’t ‘publicly stunts’, as they may interpret such.
Rather this is his real life we’re talking about here. So for instance, when he carries a gun and gets in trouble for it (the abovementioned incident did involve a concealed firearm), the masses may consider such entertainment. But Em is truly stressed out – for instance opting to forsake guns altogether.
A Soul sold to the Devil
He then concludes the verse by speaking to the idea that he’s received more than he expected, both good and bad, as far as his music career is concerned. Yes, even Em is astonished by how rich and famous he’s become just from rapping. But on the flipside he’s “sold (his) soul to the devil” and has to deal with being “trapped” by Hollywood, so to speak.
He made this sacrifice, as stated in other songs, primarily in the name of catering to Hailie. But now she too has to deal with the negative side effects, such as the two of them being forced to “live alienated” due to his fame.
Conclusively, we can assert that “Say Goodbye Hollywood” was sort of a trailblazing tune. It didn’t mark the first time that a popular musician cited the pitfalls of making it big in Hollywood (i.e. “Hotel California” by the Eagles, 1978).
But since this song came out, said subject matter has become sort of a norm in the music industry, not only amongst White rappers (i.e. NF, Tom McDonald) but also singers in general (i.e. The Weeknd, Alec Benjamin). It has actually become a lot more common for musicians to present stardom as being not all it’s cracked up to be since Eminem has done it.
Facts about “Say Goodbye Hollywood”
This is another song which Eminem composed alongside Luis Resto. And the other co-writer, Mike Elizondo, is also a regular collaborator.
Eminem also served as the exclusive producer of “Say Goodbye Hollywood”.
This track is from his fourth album, known as “The Eminem Show”. This is a project which came out via Interscope Records, Aftermath Entertainment and Shady Records on 26 May 2002.
And “Say Goodbye Hollywood” was not one of the singles released from the album. Rather they would be, in succession, “Without Me“, “Cleanin’ Out My Closet“, “Superman“, “Sing for the Moment” and “Business”.
You may recognize a couple of those songs as being Eminem classics. And “The Eminem Show” did top the Billboard 200, UK Album Charts and album charts in a whole bunch of other countries. In fact it was the top-selling album, globally, of the year 2002, in addition to being the recipient of the 2003 Best Rap Album Grammy Award.
This track, at least as far as Eminem is concerned, is actually entitled “Sayin’ Goodbye to Hollywood” (as indicated by the chorus for instance).
Reportedly, as originally planned this track was not to be featured on the abovementioned album. But it made the cut after the song “Stimulate” was removed and added to The Special Bonus Disc of the soundtrack for “8 Mile”. “8 Mile” is an autobiographically-inspired movie Eminem, which came out in 2002.
And the reason he opted to add “Say Goodbye Hollywood” to his fourth album was due to how it relates to other tracks on the playlist. And said tracks would be the two which directly precedes it, respectively “The Kiss (Skit)” and “Soldier”.