So, the other day I was in Miami for a little vacation. I was doing vacation type things so I wasn’t by a computer for a few days. Over the course of the day, i got a few texts from random friends asking me if I had seen the Macklemore video. Of course I hadn’t. Why would I ever have seen that? But, upon the urging of others, I popped it up on my phone while i was taking a dump. Well…goddamn…
Now before i get into this, I should probably preface it all with my “relationship” with Macklemore. I don’t know him. I’ve never met him. I have a decent amount of friends who have and across the board, he’s a beloved dude. I don’t mean that in a musical sense. I mean that he is, by all account a great, humble and cool person. I’ve never been a fan of his music really but, to be fair, I also never paid much attention to him.. If anything, he’s been the butt of an occasional twitter joke here and there over the years. I recall hearing the name prior to him blowing up off of “Thrift shop” cause he was very much involved in the indy rap underground scene. At the time, he was just another white rap guy to me. Then he blew up and all of a sudden had a million fans, and almost as many angry rap fan detractors. I can’t front, hearing the anthems from that last album definitely didn’t sit well with me but, at the same time, I was clearly not his target audience. I always felt he was either trying to make music for super bowl commercials or simply pandering. That said, I never felt THAT strongly either way. Simply put, the dudes music wasn’t on my radar enough to matter. Famous or not, i didn’t give a shit.
So, back to the toilet…I’m sitting there watching this video. It’s insane. I mean that in a good way. The video is fucking ridiculous. It looks amazing. Sure, it seems to borrow heavily from “Uptown funk” by Bruno Mars but it’s something I couldn’t take my eyes off. As much as people seem to be shitting on it, I simply cannot front on the spectacle of it all.
There’s a few sides to this. First off, you have the angry rap purist side. This is that thing within all old rap fans, such as myself, that has a negative gut reaction to this kinda thing. From seeing the originators of rap do back up vocals for Macklemore to actually sitting though a song about buying and driving scooters. Just seeing Kool Moe D, Melle Mel and Caz clearly collecting a check kinda hurt my heart. Immediately, I feel my soul saying “NOPE! NO FUCKING WAY!”. But, as I get older and care less about that kinda stuff, a part of me just kinda drifts away from all of it and just sees this song and video for what it is.
For that reason, i feel as though I gotta give credit where credit is due. This shit is fucking weird. Super weird.
The man made a song about buying scooters. He didn’t make just any song about it. he made an epic scooter buying anthem. Why? For who? I have no idea but I think I appreciate the tongue in cheek of it all. You can disagree with me (and you probably do) but Macklemore seems pretty likable in this video. He’s funny. Like I said earlier, i don’t know the guy but this video seems to be him just letting it rip. He does choreographed fuckin’ dancing for christ sake. And as painful as it is to see 3 hip hop legends do back up vocals for a blonde white dude in skinny jeans, at least he’s trying to expose people to them. His fan base is children who think Snoop Dogg is as old as rap gets. They probably have no fucking clue who any of those dudes are.I’d assume the think those are his actual bodyguards. Perhaps it will shine a tiny light on them and that isn’t a bad thing, as it’s known those dudes missed out on the pay day that is rap music currently.
I’m not gonna take this all the way and say I like the song cause I don’t. This song is a hybrid of “white lines”, “We are the champions” and “Lady dont tek no” by Latyrx. In other words, it comes from a good place but it’s actually kind of a mess as a stand alone song. I mean, within the confines of this video, it’s perfect but if I heard this on the radio I’d be confused as fuck. it’s like three different songs. That said, in an era where the most popular rap is mentally challenged men moaning into autotune about whatever the fuck they’re talking about, this song is taking chances. First and foremost, that singer guy. Holy shit. I have no idea how he even fits into the equation and what the idea was when they bought him in but that was a risky move. Almost as risky as his dance moves which make my knees hurt just watching. It remains to be seen if this song will actually be a hit outside of the video but, if it is, that singer being on it will be why. Secondly, and i keep harping on this, IT’S A SONG ABOUT BUYING A RIDING A SCOOTER. Like, how does that even come to be? There are so many steps in making a song. I would watch a documentary on how this song happened, from Macklemore thinking of the idea to him explaining it to Ryan Lewis, to Ryan Lewis making the beat to them calling Grnadmaster Caz and explaining it to him, etc…the whole thing just boggles my mind. But, whatever happened, the final product is here and it exists. Sure, it kinda feels like he may be trying to recapture the goofy likability of “Thrift shop”…but this is “Thrift shop” turned up to 10.
You probably hate this song and think the video is dumb. That’s cool. I don’t blame you. I got no horse in this race. Like i said, the song is ridiculous. But, I feel as though, if we all just step back and appreciate it for what it is…It’s not a song, it’s a spectacle and it’s not that bad. In fact, it’s kind of amazing.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not gonna go out and start bumping any Macklemore shit but the dude gets shit on hard all over the place. I can see past my own personal taste and take my hat off to him for simply saying “fuck it” and doing whatever the fuck he felt lie doing.
There’s layers to this shit player, Tiramisu.