Eminem is an American rapper, songwriter, record producer, record executive, film producer, and actor. He is consistently cited as one of the greatest and most influential rappers of all time. When Eminem placed second in the freestyle category at the 1997 Rap Olympics in Los Angeles, he came to the attention of Dr. Dre, founding member of pioneering rappers N.W.A. and the head of Aftermath Entertainment. By that time Eminem had developed the persona of the inhibitionless Slim Shady, who gave voice to Eminem’s id in often vulgar and violent lyrics. With Dr. Dre as his producer and mentor, Eminem released The Slim Shady LP early in 1999. The album sold several million copies, and Eminem won two Grammy Awards and four MTV Video Music Awards.