Today, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis stream new single "Same Love" via Sub Pop (?!) in support of marriage equality in general and the Music For Marriage Equality campaign in particular. The song is Macklemore's meditation on growing up in the often homophobic worlds of hip hop and the Catholic church while also looking up to his two gay uncles (pictured on the AWESOME record cover above), a model of a loving, committed relationship. To hear Mack tell it:
This song, which I wrote in April, is a response to what I have observed and experienced, and is also an act of personal accountability. It was not easy to write, and I struggled with how I, as a straight male, could genuinely speak upon this issue.
Initially, I tried writing from the perspective of a gay, bullied kid, but after getting some feedback, I felt it wasn't my story to tell. What I do know, and where I wrote from, is my own perspective growing up in a culture where "that's gay" was commonplace, with a huge stigma on those who identified and were perceived as gay.
"Same Love" is, like so many of Macklemore's songs, a passionate, heartfelt sermon--and this time it's for a cause, equal rights, that frankly deserves nothing less. (Although, comedy, camp, and rioting in the streets are all also acceptable means of supporting equality and political change.) Y'all know that I am generally not a fan of Macklemore's earnestness--a style that permeates his work from lyrics to flow to string section--and when his sometimes preachy oratory comes out swinging on the subjects of 206 hip hop, sneakers, Mariners baseball, or struggles with drug and alcohol addiction, it does nothing for me. But marriage equality is bigger than all that, bigger than any petty differences of style or tactics. It is a massively worthy cause--one of the great civil rights struggles of our time, currently reaching critical mass--and obviously a personal one for Macklemore. You can't fault the guy for really feeling it.