Eminem's biological father Marshall Bruce Mathers Jr. has reportedly died of a heart attack at the age of 67.

The rapper's father, who was frequently targeted as a deadbeat dad in his lyrics, walked out on Eminem's mum while he was still a baby.

Neighbours and members of the Mathers family told TMZ.com that Marshall died earlier this week after suffering a heart attack at his home near Fort Wayne, Indiana.

Eminem, whose real name is Marshall Bruce Mathers III, often rapped about his angry feelings towards his father and never being able to remember meeting him in person, including in his hits My Name Is, and Cleanin' Out My Closet.

In the latter track he rages: "My f**got father must've had his panties up in a bunch 'Cause he split, I wonder if he even kissed me goodbye. No, I don't, on second thought, I just f**kin' wished he would die. I look at Hailie (his own daughter), and I couldn't picture leavin' her side."

In 2001, Bruce published a letter addressed to his son in a newspaper claiming Eminem's mum Debbie, whom the hip-hop star has also had a fraught relationship with, kept him away. However, father and son have never publicly reconciled.

After the elder Marshall Mathers left the family, Eminem and his mother settled in Detroit, Michigan, where he would find fame as a rapper, while Bruce moved to California and had two more children.