The suits, ties and political platitudes of the National Party will be pitted against one of the most controversial musicians of the modern era in court tomorrow.

Eminem, aka Marshall Mathers, aka Slim Shady has taken New Zealand's governing political party to court, accusing it of using backing music to his song Lose Yourself in its 2014 election campaign TV advertisements.

A three week trial is set to begin in the High Court at Wellington tomorrow, with lawyers for the American rapper seeking damages for copyright infringement.

Unfortunately, Eminem is not expected to make an appearance at the trial.


Eight Mile Style LLC and Martin Affiliated LLC, Detroit-based publishers of Eminem's copyrights, initiated the proceedings in September 2014.

"Eminem's publishers were not approached for permission to use any of Eminem's songs for this campaign advertisement," said Joel Martin, speaking on behalf of the publishers at the time.

The National Party has flatly denied the allegations and said the music came from an Australian-based production outfit and had been used by others without complaint.

Steven Joyce, who managed the election campaign, said after the stoush first broke out he thought the use of the song was "pretty legal".

"We think these guys are just having a crack and have a bit of an eye for the main chance because it's an election campaign," he said.