Macklemore: “Sports are part of who I am”


Seattle hip-hop artist Macklemore (photo by Chris McPherson for ESPN)

We touched on ESPN The Magazine’s first-ever music issue earlier this week with running back Marshawn Lynch joining Cleveland Browns running back Trent Richardson and Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker LaMarr Woodley to recreate the cover of Run DMC’s “Ultimate Run DMC,” but with the amount of musical talent in this city, did you really think that would be the publication’s only Emerald City tie-in?

Seattle-area hip-hop artist Ben Haggerty, perhaps better known to the musical masses as ‘Macklemore,’ is also featured in the issue set to hit shelves on February 18.

“Sports are part of who I am,” Macklemore tells ESPN The Magazine senior writer Steve Wulf. “What I love about them is the stories, and that’s what I do for a living — I’m an emcee telling stories.”

And Macklemore’s stories have been heard worldwide in the last year while on tour with his producer, Ryan Lewis. Their independent album The Heist recently reached the No. 1 spot on iTunes and the duos hit single “Thrift Shop” has more than 85 million views on YouTube.

Even Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll has taken a liking to the rapper from Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood, hosting him at the Seahawks’ Week 16 thrashing of the San Francisco 49ers this past season and insisting that Macklemore’s “Can’t Hold Us” track off of The Heist be played after every Seahawks touchdown at CenturyLink Field.

And Macklemore also found himself in the middle of the Seahawks’ 2012 postseason run, joining Seattle mayor Mike McGinn and other Seattle area musicians high atop the Space Needle to raise the 12th Man flag prior to the team’s Wild Card playoff game against the Washington Redskins.

“It’s been a crazy year,” Macklemore told ESPN The Magazine. “Kinda like the Seahawks.”

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