4. Eminem f/ Dido "Stan" (2000)
Album: The Marshall Mathers LP
Producer: The 45 King & Eminem
Label: Interscope/Aftermath/Shady Records
In addition to his legendary skills on the technical front, Eminem at his best has always been a notably inventive songwriter. The Marshall Mathers LP's "Stan" might be his best concept song. It starts off with a fan growing increasingly obsessed with his favorite artist as his life falls apart. Stan's creepy from jump, writing borderline stalkery letters to Em, but it isn't until he goes to a show and feels jilted by Em that he actually loses it. When Em finally gets around to answering Stan's letter, he pieces it together that Stan's both the creep from the sketchy fan mail and the guy from the news who offed himself in his car. All of this over a loop of Dido's plaintive "Thank You" and the light sound of rain. "Stan" is a compelling narrative, even if the notion that a multimillionaire rap artist would actually read and respond to fan mail seems a little ridiculous.