Macklemore is often the target of criticism for being a successful white rapper and this was on display when he won multiple awards at the 2014 Grammys. The Seattle rapper has admitted before that he benefits from white privilege and now describes the weight of the condescension from the predominantly Black industry.
“The scrutiny was difficult at first,” Macklemore says to MTV. “I get it. I think that if I was on the other side of it, if I was myself at 20 years old looking at the ‘Thrift Shop‘ guy, I would probably be like, ‘Yo, fuck this dude.’ I was the poster child for a while of like cultural appropriation and white privilege and how that panned out within Hip Hop and the white people winning all the awards that are given out by other white people that have this certain merit and all of that. I felt the same way as a lot of the criticism.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Macklemore describes how fatherhood forced him out of his addiction to drugs. When his now-wife, Tricia Davis, told him he missed her period, he prayed for the first time in a few years, hoping that she was not pregnant.
“I got down on my knees and I prayed, just like, ‘God, I’m not ready for this right now. I’m not ready to be a father like I can’t even get sober.'”
He heard Davis crying from the bathroom after taking a pregnancy test and he knew it read positive.
“It was a wake-up call that I desperately needed,” he says. “Like you’re about to be a dad. Dude, stop doing drugs and lying to people and sneaking around. Like do you want to live life or do you want to escape life? That was one of those pivotal turning points.”
He says that throughout Davis’ pregnancy, he slowly regained her trust as he learned to be completely transparent. He said he found himself happier and music came more natural. His daughter, Sloane Ava Simone Haggerty, was born in May.
“It’s this unconditional love that happens instantaneously,” he says of her birth. “That was one of the coolest things.”
Macklemore says he takes his job as a father seriously. He takes his daughter on walks and uses music to soothe her.
“I feel like she really likes Snoop Dogg,” he says. “Like “Gin and Juice” for some reason just calms her down. She’s just like (snap) and I’ve used it a couple times and it’s like worked every time.”
He released “Growing Up (Sloane’s Song)” earlier this month and is currently working on his sophomore album with Ryan Lewis.