Macklemore is a rapper who is independent of a label, and gained fame in leaps and bounds when he reached the number one spot on the Billboard Hot 100 with his debut single “Thrift Shop” and consequently “Can’t Hold Us,” not only being the first artist to reach the number one spot without a label since 1994, but also becoming the first artist to have their first two singles top the charts. Macklemore uses his unique position as a well renowned rapper to produce thought provoking lyrics that will be listened to by millions, without the common themes of hip hop music. Rap is commonly thought of as mindless lyrics and beats about women, drugs, and violence; however, Macklemore revolutionized this trend with the release of his debut album The Heist. But even before that he was releasing music that did not fit the cookie cutter formula of hip hop, most notable was the release of “Otherside.” Macklemore, through his use of word play, rhythm, and ground breaking lyrics was able to bring issues to light that very little rappers had done before, and doing so with an unreasonable amount of success.
Ben Haggerty was born on June 19, 1983, in Seattle, Washington to a mother who was a social worker who encouraged being supportive of people’s differences. While in high school he started to use drugs and alcohol to the point of addiction. In 2000 he released an EP, a release too long to be a single and too short to be considered an album, under the pseudonym Professor Macklemore. With his increase of popularity he fell into even more sex and drugs and eventually was entered into a rehab program in 2008 at his father’s request (“Macklemore Biography”). Now with his recent resurgence of popularity, Ben, now just Mack...
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.... Also since he is using lyrics he has to alter his vocabulary in order to keep the flow of the song but also make sure that it still makes sense. Macklemore is also able to provide thought provoking lyrics with easily digestible beats and because of that is able to reach a larger audience than a lot of texts.
While some people may not classify rappers in general as authors because the only points they want to get across is how much money they make, how many girls they get, and how many drugs they do, and while some of Macklemore’s are not nearly as deep and thoughtful as “Otherside,” he should definitely be considered an author. He uses main rhetoric strategies used to influence people, he provides a certain stance, reaches out to a specific audience, and he presents his point of view in a unique medium all the while discussing topics applicable to today’s society.
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