Christopher Willard via Getty Maclemore
Maclemore is readying for a return to music as he continues to stay open about his recovery journey.
The song, a collaboration with Australian singer-songwriter Tones and Itouches on pivotal experiences in his life, including his 2020 relapse. The star has been in recovery since 2008, when his father helped get him into treatment after years of drug and alcohol abuse.
“For me, the most important thing to learn in recovery is that I’m powerless over drugs,” Macklemore, 39, told the outlet. “The disease is insidious. It’s constantly telling you lies in order for you to go off and go, ‘You know what? I think the best thing for me is to go off and get high’ — knowing damn well that’s the thing that kills me. That’s the insanity portion of the disease.”
Dia Dipasupil/Getty Maclemore
In January, the rapper OPEN UP TO PEOPLE about his relapse during the summer of 2020 and the progress he’s made since.
“It was really painful for myself and for the people who loved me. I stopped doing the work,” he said at the time. “When I have to be still and exist within my own head, that’s where my disease lives… [But] I’m like, ‘You know what? I don’t need to pretend like I’m some perfect dude in recovery.’ I am not at all, and there’s no shame.”
And just as he’s made it part of his mission to be open with fans, he is with his kids as well. Macklemore shares daughters Sloane, 7, and Colette, 4, and son Hugo, 11 months, with wife Tricia Davis, and said that Sloane has known about his struggles, albeit without specifics, since she was 3 or 4.
“Why would I hide it? It is who I am,” he said. “In terms of Daddy’s sober meetings that he needs to go to, she’s well aware and has been for quite some time.”
While he considers being a dad his “greatest success,” the musician also said he knows that his kids can’t fix him.
“I remember being like, ‘I don’t ever want my kids to see me loaded,'” he said of learning Davis was pregnant with their first child. “There was this relief like, ‘Okay, now I can stay clean for someone else.’ But that’s not how this disease works. I have to do the work.”
Meanwhile, during his interview with Rolling Stonethe “Same Love” performer said “Chant” serves as “a bit of a rebirth.”
“I wanted to challenge myself, get through moments of writer’s block, and capture the spirit of what it’s like to overcome something, push through it, and get up the next day and do it again,” he said.
The song is a preview of the body of work Maclemore made during the pandemic, which follows his 2017 album Gemini. He explained that he purposely kept the album to himself until he could share it with a wider audience.
“Songs belong to everyone once you put them out in the world,” he said. “The best way to experience that with people is to get in front of them and watch them sing the words back to you. There’s no better feeling as a performer. I didn’t want to put out an album where I couldn’t do that.”
“Chant” is out now.
If you or someone you know is struggling with substance abuse, please contact the SAMHSA helpline at 1-800-662-HELP.