Macklemore's Last Stand - By Volume

The kid that went down isn't dead; he just can't find his phone. The Hold Steady - Almost Everything
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Macklemore’s Last Stand

Only the love of a saviour can save ya. Author: on January 27, 2014
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If the Grammys are an opportunity to celebrate the glory of music’s recent achievements – who are The Suburbs, though, really? – 2014’s ceremony must stand confident in its success and the profound effect that will resonate from it for years to come. This time, though, it’s less pointedly a matter of taste for which we must congratulate the institution. No – this year, the Grammys righted a wrong that has for too long been allowed to stand. 2014’s Most Important Music Awards Show will go down in history for the moment America finally accepted Macklemore for who he is: an LGBT ally.

It’s been a long time coming, that’s for sure. It’s hard for the straight, cis supporters of LGBT rights: they face problematic media scrutiny and ingrained prejudice on a daily basis, and in an industry so preoccupied with identity and the perceived fluidity thereof, it’s refreshing to see an artist like Macklemore speak up with consistency about the real and urgent issues faced by people who can’t help the way they feel about #gaymarriage. It has taken the best part of half a decade for people like Macklemore to be welcomed into the mainstream for who they are. Despite his winning the award for Best New Artist last night, Macklemore’s career stretches back to at least 2009, when he courageously declared on Twitter: I’m so happy right now. No homo…I love new york! Pause. I’m so not gay! Fuck yea. And I’m so secure in that! Popular culture needs heroes like this to keep the ship steady.

Macklemore’s cause is made no less trying by the ungrateful actions of some of those in extreme factions of the exact same demographic to which he’s trying to bring salvation. Inside the so-called “queer” culture of fringe groups, the battle for gay marriage simply won’t ever be enough, and certain groups have also sought to knock down Macklemore’s desire to be the voice for people of all races. The vitriol that Macklemore receives from those he seeks to protect is telling to him. “Nobody believed Jesus at first, either. But he turned out okay. He knew what it meant to be a marginalised white guy, you know?”

But the Grammy-winning artist doesn’t let those voices affect his resilient stance that gay marriage is the major battle facing our society today. “I don’t know if queer homelessness is so widespread an issue”, he said. “People are always asking me whether I have thought about raising the question of employment discrimination – but I feel that’s not a topic people can get behind quite so… easily.” Macklemore sees it as his sacred duty to pick up the microphone and represent every type of queer person – from gay men to gay women – and he knows that his voice is the last thread of hope for many who have grown disillusioned with a lack of queer representation in the mainstream media. “I just think it’s great that Macklemore is out here representing gay people,” said one fan. “Because if he didn’t, who. else. could?”

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