Monday, May 7, 2012

Macklemore: Conscious Rap

When it comes to conscious rap, the first name that comes to my mind is Macklemore. Now, I know I'm not a rap expert nor do I know a million rap artists that also write conscious raps, but I find that Macklemore has, on numerous occasions, rapped about topics that are important to society. In particular, his songs "Otherside" and "Wings" detail the accounts of cough syrup overdoses and consumerism, respectively.
Macklemore may be a different socially conscious rapper than others though due to his background. He has had his own experiences and problems with drug addiction. Compared to other rappers, I believe he has a better perspective about things like drugs because of his personal experiences. Also, I find that I respect him much more for going through his problems and then rapping about how about it in order to get the word out. The messages in his song really cause people to think about the issues we have in this world, which is something a lot of other rap tracks do not. His songs actually mean something. Besides having a deep message in his songs, I find that the beats, samples, and verses are catchy and enjoyable to listen to.

I personally love conscious rap, and I hope that more conscious rappers emerge from the rap industry. It seems as if there are more conscious rappers today than before; however, I feel like that may be because the rap industry is much larger now.

How do you feel Macklemore compares with other conscious rappers?
What do you think the future of conscious rap will look like?


  1. I also find it important that after Macklemore's past, he reveals many of both his own and rap's wrongdoings. It is significant that he exposes the effects of such faults, so that they do not affect the lives of more people, especially youth who are persuaded as he says, to such a great extent, by rap music.

    Other conscious rappers identify problems in rap music and attempt to create a public awareness for these issues. Talib Kweli in his song, "Get By," discloses everything that people do just to survive in life. In "The People," Common reveals the disparity between social classes. These two rappers in these songs and in many others expose problems that they recognize both in their lives and in rap music.

    While it would be possible to compare these conscious rappers on a close reading level, as is worthwhile to do in many situations and for many other genres, doing so here would be wrong. The most important aspect of these songs is the overall message, and therefore, as long as these rappers use stylistic elements that fit their message, then they have succeeded. In each of these four analyzed songs, the rapper succeeds in portraying his message.

  2. I agree that Macklemore's raps do tend to be more conscious than some other artists, but I think it's impossible to attribute this to his personal experiences. That being said, I still think his narrators display an insight to drug dependancies as well as other deeper topics that we don't always see. Rap music references drugs and violence all the time. But, Macklemore's music offers a different perspective- one that definitely makes the audience (at least for me) question the consequences of the drug and violence culture that often surfaces in rap music.

  3. Check out Fool Blast on sound cloud if u like macklemore pritty fresh stuff.

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