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Person to Watch in 2012: Macklemore

Joined: 1/26/2012
Posts: 1
Music has evolved over many centuries, from tribal and cultural sounds, to the Beatles and classic rock and finally to the modern genres of today. During this evolution the message and meaning to songs has taken a downfall. Lyrics are no longer always positive and meaningful but instead send messages to our youth of drugs, alcohol, and sex. This is especially true in the hip-hop industry. Macklemore, however, uses his music in a constructive manner to spread a message to his listeners. He’s changing the way people view hip-hop which is why he’s someone to watch for in 2012.
Macklemore, born Ben Haggarty, is a hip-hop musician. Many artists today follow a formula given to them by record labels: violence, drugs, and sex sells. Originally, hip-hop was a purposeful form of music meant to talk about issues and educate listeners. This deteriorated to artists just trying to sell records: the music became about the money. However, Macklemore’s music is working to reverse this trend. He talks about real issues to which today’s youth can relate. He makes the lyrics real and connects them to his fans’ lives.
In the music industry, many musicians’ lyrics reflect events that maybe they haven’t experienced themselves. Consequently the purpose to their music falls flat because their fans can’t relate to the music. Macklemore reflects on personal events in his life. He teaches and educates though his own hardships and experiences that have effected him.
One of the main topics of education in Macklemore’s music is drug use. Macklemore began using a drug common to the hip-hop scene: cough syrup. The mixture, also called purple drank, was glorified by other musicians who happened to have a large influence in Macklemore’s life. Just as easily as Macklemore, was influenced by his idols, adolescents today are just as easily influenced by musicians, movie stars, and others around them. Knowing this, Macklemore worked that message into his music. As he struggled to make his own way in the music industry, he realized how strong his influence was on kids and that the drugs weren’t conducive to being creative. Macklemore uses his past to help others realize that drugs aren’t worth it. Rather than glorifying things that are wrong, he sends a positive message.
Aside from using his past to educate, Macklemore uses his music to talk about other issues seen throughout America. His song “Wings” focuses on the issue of consumerism in America. The lyrics talk how people today are consumed by clothes, shoes and other materialistic possessions that in the end are all temporary: we wear what we are, we are what we wear (Wings). Our obsession with material things, while other people are lucky to have anything at all is reflected in the song’s lyrics.
Macklemore is a musician to watch for more of in 2012. He uses his talent to influence kids in a positive way. He brings back true hip-hop by talking about issues that many of us and our country as a whole face.
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Comment by michness

Joined: 1/25/2011
Posts: 210
I have been looking for a non-offensive rap artist for forever. Macklemore is perfect; thanks for writing this! :)
Posted: Friday, January 27, 2012 9:10:27 PM
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Comment by mcoly618

Joined: 5/2/2009
Posts: 472
Hi, I'm the PR Coordinator for Stage of Life. I'm leaving you this comment to let you know that your essay for our Person to Watch writing contest was one of the finalists. Congratulations!

Here's the link to the contest summary page,
We'll be formally announcing the winner soon.

Feel free to share this news with your friends and family as well as “Like” us on Facebook and “Follow” us on Twitter.

To be named an essay finalists in our national writing competition is a big deal. Our previous winners have been talked about on and other media outlets.

Congrats again. We look forward to seeing more of your essays/writing on Thanks for helping us in our mission of creating the world's largest pool of cross-generational stories.
Posted: Wednesday, February 8, 2012 7:43:15 PM
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Comment by DarkStar49

Joined: 5/28/2009
Posts: 332
Nice job! You present this artist in a very proactive way and brought life to this musician in your writing. I like the way it came across and am interested in the fact that for a change, money and materialism is not the objective in this talent. Good luck!
Posted: Wednesday, February 22, 2012 6:56:18 AM
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