Macklemore and Ryan Lewis are up for a lucky number seven Grammy’s this year, and they will be competing against Kendrick Lamar — who is also nominated for seven — in five categories: Album of the Year, Best New Artist, Best Rap Performance, Best Rap Song and Best Rap Album. That last trophy race in particular has spawned some controversy in the hip-hop community. And Macklemore seems to get.
In a refreshingly self-aware interview with The Source (via MTV News), which crowned him as their Man of the Year, Macklemore says that “people are rightfully skeptical” of him and admits that the Best Rap Album award should probably go to Kendrick over him:
“[In the Best Rap Album category]. we’re up against Kendrick, who made a phenomenal album. If we win a Grammy for Best Rap Album, hip-hop is going to be heated. In terms of [that category], I think it should go to Kendrick. He’s family. TDE is family, and I understand why hip-hop would feel like Kendrick got robbed [if he didn't win].”
That said, he’s also not trying to go home empty handed. He thinks his album The Heist, which has sold 13 million copies this year, could and should take one or some of the other categories he’s nominated in:
“I would love to win a different category. We obviously had massive success on commercial radio, and I think that, in ways, The Heist was a bigger album, but Kendrick has a better rap album.”
And that the commercial success of “Thrift Shop” caused Macklemore & Ryan Lewis to be unfairly maligned by the hip-hop community:
“The song almost got too big. People weren’t able to see the rest of the album for what it was. They put us in the one-hit wonder box. And they didn’t give the rest of the project room to live. People didn’t do the research.”
Tune in Sunday, January 26 to see which way things go and Kendrick perform.