Macklemore and Ryan Lewis‘ independent album The Heist sold an incredible 78, 000 copies in its first week, reaching No. 2 on the US Billboard chart, and there’s a great story behind it, one which encompasses everything from addiction to Major League baseball.
In this episode of Jabari Presents, Jabari met Macklemore and Ryan Lewis in Seattle as they were filming their hilarious video for “Thrift Shop” and preparing for the release of their album. The rapper discloses some of his past problems with addiction, and both artists discuss the “70-hour-a-week” sacrifices needed to be successful as indie artists, revealing their belief that doing everything in-house and maintaining control of your brand can give you significant bargaining power with major labels.
You’ll learn that the album’s success, “was grassroots, it wasn’t big money behind it, it wasn’t a label. It wasn’t a co-sign, it was just hard work and people connecting with the music… and that’s the dopest thing, you cant take that from me.”
Macklemore expands, “Like, you can talk shit about my music, you can say whatever you want, you can not like it, but you can’t away the fact that there are x amount of people that believe in what I do, passionately… and that’s better than any co-sign, that’s better than any signing bonus, that’s better than any label.”
Watch the video for yourself below, and check out our review of “The Heist” here.