First, I wanna give a shout out to Alex Hoffman for introducing us to this amazing musical talent. Also, congrats on the engagement to McKenzie Main, can’t wait. Costa Rica 2012!
He has been described as a socially conscious rapper, with many of his songs addressing issues surrounding consumerism, race and drug addiction. Ben Haggerty, known by his stage name Macklemore, grew up in Seattle, Washington. He attended Garfield and Nathan Hale high schools, and even went on to earn a bachelor’s degree at Evergreen State College. Interested in reaching a younger generation through his music, he took a job at a juvenile-detention facility. There, he was a part of a program called “Gateways,” which was organized around rap and keeping kids off the streets and outta violence with music.
In 2000 Macklemore recorded an EP titled Open Your Eyes under the name Professor Macklemore, which he distributed himself. Macklemore dropped “Professor” from his name, and released his first official full-length album, The Language of My World in January 2005. In September of 2009 he released The Unplanned Mixtape. In the past, Macklemore has struggled with substance abuse problems, including OxyContin and marijuana. He considers this the reason for his lack of production between 2005 and 2009., But, after cleaning himself up in 2008, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis became a collaborative and creative unit. In October 2010, he teamed up with DJ Ryan Lewis to create the VS. ReduxEP. Macklemore used his experience with substance abuse (especially cough syrup) to create the mixtape’s critically acclaimed song “Otherside,” which samples the Red Hot Chilli Peppers song of the same name.
He celebrated two years of sobriety in early August 2010, as stated during his performance at Capitol Hill Block Party 2010. In late April 2010, he performed an impromptu set at a house party at Colorado College. The set consisted of his track “And We Danced”, two consecutive times to the ecstatic screams of over two hundred deeply devoted fans. In December 2010, he released a tribute song named “My Oh My” for then recently deceased Seattle Mariners broadcaster Dave Niehaus, which has received extensive coverage in Seattle media sources. Macklemore performed the song at the 2011 Mariner’s Opening Day on April 8.