I know that everyone and their brother has already seen this video, but I just wanted to put it on my blog to show how fantastic this was. Mackemore, or Ben Haggerty and formerly Professor Macklemore, is an amazing rapper who, according to Wikipedia, “began independently releasing music since 2000 and now collaborates with producer Ryan Lewis, violinist Andrew Joslyn, and trumpeter Owuor Arunga. He has gained a significant online fanbase.”
“He has released one mixtape, three EPs and two albums, although none on a major record label. His music video “Thrift Shop” has been viewed on YouTube more than 200 million times, and reached number 1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart, selling more than 2.2 million copies. Macklemore released his debut studio album The Heist on October 9, 2012, which charted at number 2 on the US Billboard 200 chart, selling 78,000 copies in the first week.“
Macklemore’s support of gay rights, including same-sex marriage, is expressed in his single “Same Love”. The song also condemns homophobia in hip hop, society and mass media. He does not follow organized religion, referring in “Vipassana” to an “atheist Jesus piece,” symbolic of his spiritual and philosophical views.
Several of his singles elaborate on symbolism and a philosophy of the term “God” defining not a being, but in what and how an individual is able to realize a faith and happiness. Macklemore has said to have realized this in hip hop music. In “Church”, Macklemore contrasts established religion’s collectivism to the subjectivity of realities he would face growing up, including almost losing his life to drug-use. The ink used for his writing is described as God in place of Jesus Christ; hearing his music play out of speakers, “communion“; the South Bronx as “hip hop’s Egypt“; and his savior being hip hop music by way of referenced originator Kool Herc. In 2008, Macklemore went to rehab for drug-addiction, alcoholism and related obsessive behavior. He spent most of his twenties “trying to fight [his] way out of that (way of life)”.
“I want to be someone who is respected and not just in terms of my music. I want to be respected in terms of the way that I treat people. The way, the subjects in which I choose to .. address through my music. And not because I’m, like, trying to make records about them. It’s just that’s what’s important to me. Music is my creative outlet in terms of expressing what is important to me; what has importance, what has a value. And I wanna be respected for that.”—Macklemore, Jabari Presents