Macklemore gets down and dirty in a trash-themed parody of his and Ryan Lewis’ breakout hit, “Thrift Shop” for Sesame Street. Joined by some hip-looking grouch MCs, the rapper extols the virtues of yuckiness, rubbish and all that is “gross and awesome” in the 90-second spin on the song, which won both the Best Rap Performance and Best Rap Song Grammys last year.
“One grouch’s trash, that’s another grouch’s outfit,” offers Macklemore at one juncture of the new version, just before a shot of him settling in, grouch-style, into his very own metal garbage can.
On a much more serious note, Macklmore spent the latter part of 2014 adding his voice to conversations about race and citizens’ relationships with police following the grand jury decisions not to indict police officers in the death of two unarmed men, Michael Brown and Eric Garner. Following the news of the first grand jury decision, regarding Brown, the rapper tweeted, “Solidarity,” and took part in a protest that shut down part of Interstate 5 in Seattle. “It’s not about me,” he wrote at the time. “It’s about Mike Brown.”
Toward the end of the year, he also talked about white privilege and cultural misappropriation on the New York City radio station Hot 97. “Eric Garner, Mike Brown [are] very sad situations, situations that left so much frustration in me watching these injustices happen again,” he said. “If there’s anything positive that has come out of their deaths, I believe it has brought attention to the injustices that have been plaguing America since the [beginning].”
He also spent some of the conversation discussing the backlash he endured following the success of his garbage-loving friends’ favorite song, “Thrift Shop.” “[That song] became massive,” he said. “When that happens, for one, people are going to be polarized…. We didn’t make pop music; pop music came to us. When it hits that level of mass consumption, people are immediately going to put it into a box and be like, ‘That’s wack and why the fuck is he winning anything?’ ‘Everyone likes this. It’s not cool anymore.’ I do that all the time [myself].”