Nate Mathers is 13 years younger than his maternal half-brother, rapper Eminem
In addition to his own children, Eminem has also been a father figure to his younger half-brother, Nathan “Nate” Mathers.
In 1986, when the rapper was 13, his mother, Debbie Mathers (née Nelson), welcomed a son, Nathan, with her boyfriend Fred Samra. Eminem’s own father, Marshall Mathers Jr., abandoned him and Debbie when he was a baby.
At 8 years old, Nathan was placed in foster care, an experience that Eminem referenced in his 2014 song “Headlights.”
“When he was taken away I always said if I ever get in a position to take him, I would take him,” Eminem, whose real name is Marshall Mathers III, told Rolling Stone in 2004. “I tried to apply for full custody when I was 20, but I didn’t have the means.”
Nearly a decade later, the rapper gained custody of his half-brother, who was then 16. Now, Nathan credits Eminem with being a positive influence in his life.
“He was the best role model I could have had to help me be the dad that I am today,” he said in a February 2023 appearance on Just a Little Shady, a podcast hosted by Eminem’s daughter, Hailie Jade Scott.
Here’s everything to know about Eminem’s brother, Nathan “Nate” Mathers.
Eminem was his legal guardian
When Nathan was taken into foster care as a child, Eminem was about 23, and he tried multiple times before successfully getting legal custody of brother. In 2004, when Nathan was still living with Eminem, the rapper opened up to Rolling Stone about seeing his brother go in and out of foster homes.
“I watched him when he was in the foster home. He was so confused. I mean, I cried just going to see him at the foster home,” Eminem recalled. “The day he was taken away, I was the only one allowed to see him. They had come and got him out of school. He didn’t know what the f— was going on. The same thing that had happened in my life was happening in his.”
He continued: “It was like, ‘Man, if I get in position, I’m gonna stop all this s—.’ And I got in position and did.”
He’s a DJ, music producer and actor
Like his brother, Nathan works in the entertainment industry. He’s released music under the name Nate Kane and is also a DJ, music producer and actor.
His acting credits include the crime thriller Devil’s Night: Dawn of the Nain Rouge (2020) and the music video for former D12 member Swifty McVay’s song “Scariest Thing.” Nathan has also been featured in a number of Eminem’s music videos, such as “The Way I Am” (2000), “Without Me” (2002) and “Sing for the Moment” (2003).
He learned about making music from Eminem
In his appearance on Hailie’s podcast Just a Little Shady, Nathan said his brother inspired him to make his own music at a young age.
“I had learned from your dad, my brother, how to do music and how to write formulas, compound syllables, whatnot, and tested it out in the beginning,” he said. “From there, I started looking around for beats and whatnot and got comfortable enough with my voice and writing skills that I started recording and getting a feel for songs, how I would deliver them and how that would formulate to where people would enjoy it.”
He’s married and has three children
Nathan married his wife, Ashley Mae Mathers (née Withey), on May 6, 2018. They have three children: daughter Audrianna and sons Liam and Carter. The couple have not shared how they met or when they started dating, but according to one of Ashley’s Instagram posts, they have known each other for many years.
“In my favorite place with my favorite guy celebrating my favorite number,” she wrote in May 2022 for their fourth wedding anniversary. “4 years married to you. It sounds so minimal compared to the 20 years you’ve been my best friend.”
He has a close relationship with Enimem’s daughter Hailie
To welcome Nathan to her podcast, Just a Little Shady, Hailie introduced him as her “bruncle.” She went on to explain that because their 10-year age gap is less than that between Nathan and her father, she sees him as more of a brother than an uncle.
“For those of you who may not know, Nate is my uncle — my dad’s younger brother — but also we kind of grew up together because Nate lived with us for a while when I was young. So he’s kind of like a ‘bruncle,’ ” she said.
Nathan interjected, “Or a ‘funcle.’ ”
“I would say brother-uncle more than a ‘funcle,’ but no, it’s a combination of the three,” Hailie joked. “You definitely act younger than your age. I always think that we are closer in age than you are to Dad, but still, I never realize how much older you are than me because I feel like you are like a brother.”
He has said Eminem was “the best role model”
Having become his legal guardian when he was 16, Nathan said Eminem was the “best role model” — despite what the public may think about him.
"Oh, yeah, I mean going off of lyrics and everything — I could see that [people thought he wouldn’t be a good dad]," he said on Just a Little Shady. “He was the best role model I could have had to help me be the dad that I am today."
Nathan also opened up about growing up with a famous sibling, saying that it took him a while to realize the magnitude of his brother’s fame.
“I started understanding a little more — when reality would hit — when I would start seeing him on TV and going to shows and all the signatures and crazy people,” he said. “I’m like, ‘All right, well, this is real.' ”
He once bleached his hair to match Eminem’s signature look
In his conversation with Hailie on her podcast, Nathan said that growing up, he wanted to emulate his older brother’s signature style.
“He would get so many free clothes and buy clothes that I would just take some,” he said. “I would take his hand-me-downs, his huge Phat Farm outfits and stuff that I thought would fit me. What was I, like 110 pounds that time just trying to wear 3XL? [It] fit perfect!”
Nathan also said that he even went so far as to bleach his hair to match Eminem.
“When I was 12 and went to your dad’s first show … my cousin John convinced me, going to his show, that not only should I dye my hair, [but] that my brother, your dad, dyes his eyebrows,” he recalled. “Being young I’m like, ‘Oh really? I wanna dye my eyebrows too. Sounds like a perfect idea. I wanna look like twins.’ Not the case.”
When Hailie noted that Eminem didn’t dye his eyebrows, Nathan joked, “I looked like a ferret!”
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