Macklemore x Ryan Lewis "Otherside"
It's been said by this writer before and I'll say it again, Macklemore is one of the most honest MCs in all of Seattle hip-hop. The 25-year-old lyricist has a knack for revealing parts of his soul that most rappers wouldn't dare touch. It's probably his disdain for hip-hop's machismo that makes him one of my favorite local rappers. That's not just a writer blowing sunshine up a musicians backside, it's the truth. And if you happen to be Irish, Mack is totally your guy.
Macklemore in action, photo courtesy Three Imaginary Girls
On my best of 2009 list is the tune that he and producer Ryan Lewis recently released called “Otherside.” It's a powerful five minutes about the destructive nature of drugs within hip-hop culture. Macklemore has been more honest than most rappers would be about his own issues with addiction and this tune not only helps further that honesty as he raps about himself, but the Red Hot Chili Pepper/Bun B samples help cast a light on how drugs can ruin lives in music culture as well.
A part of what makes the song so enjoyable is that Macklemore himself is now flourishing amidst his own sobriety. I can't say I ever met him when he was abusing whatever substance was giving him trouble, but a blind man could see how focused he is now.
In addition to the song above, if you haven't seen the video that he and Stranger Film Genius Zia Mohajerjasbi just released yesterday for the song "The Town," it's definitely an instant classic. Check it out below:
Yesterday's pick here.