Eminem's "Compound Rhymes" Explained

Eminem’s “Compound Rhymes” Explained


Rhymes can be one syllable long, such as “cat,” “bat,” and “hat.” However, Eminem mainly uses “compound rhymes,” also known as multisyllable rhymes, polysyllable rhymes, or multies. Compound rhymes are created when a rhyme is more than one syllable long, such as “random luck” rhyming with “vans and trucks” (which are three-syllable long compound rhymes).

Kool G Rap
With multisyllable rhyming, it’s not like you’re just rhyming “fight” and then “light” and then “with all my might.” You’re rapping “random luck” with “handsome fuck,” “we cop vans and trucks”—it be shit like that. It ain’t just doing the basics, because that’s not ear catching—more basic rhymes don’t catch the ear like that.

Eminem’s “Lose Yourself” uses six-syllable compound rhymes—these kind of longer compound rhymes are only used by the most skilful rappers and he often has to bend the rhymes to get them to rhyme fully:

oh there goes Rabbit he
choked he’s so mad but he
no he won’t have it he

Want to learn how to break down raps and transcribe your own raps?
Check out the books How To Rap and How To Rap 2 which include breakdowns of hundreds of techniques…