Macklemore Is The Source’s ‘Man Of The Year’
The hip-hop publication spoke to the Seattle rapper about his whirlwind year for its January 2014 cover story. With his unique sound and look, Macklemore understands critics who have been skeptical of his success as a rapper.
“People are going to be skeptical. I’m a white dude from Seattle. People are rightfully skeptical of white people making hip-hop. They’re gonna say, ‘Let me hear him rap. Let me hear an interview,’” he states. “Before we sold a million copies of the album, when it was just ‘Thrift Shop,’ before it became massive, they were putting us in a box. The song almost got too big.”
He explains that ‘Thrift Shop,’ which has gone seven times platinum, eclipsed the album, ‘The Heist,’ he and Ryan Lewis created — the song is actually the eighth single from the pair. “People weren’t able to see the rest of the album for what it was,” the 30-year-old entertainer says. “They put us in the one-hit wonder box. And they didn’t give the rest of the project room to live. People didn’t do their research.”
The year begins on a high note for Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, who are nominated for seven Grammys. The always-humble rapper feels the Best Rap Album nod really goes to fellow newcomer Kendrick Lamar.
“In terms of [that category], I think it should go to Kendrick,” he admits. “He’s family. TDE is family, and I understand why hip-hop would feel like Kendrick got robbed [if he didn't win]. I’m not trying to compare albums; I think you can make an argument for both. With that being said, I am a huge supporter of what Kendrick does. And because of that, I would love to win in a different category.
“We obviously had massive success on commercial radio, and I think that, in ways, ‘The Heist’ was a bigger album, but Kendrick has a better rap album.”
Read more about The Source’s fourth annual ‘Man of the Year’ issue here.