ST. GEORGE – Despite the untimely deluge of rain, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, along with DJ Marcus Wing, delivered one of the most memorable shows Dixie has ever seen. Thousands of loyal fans packed the rain-soaked field, donning furry thrift store finds and an overwhelming amount of school spirit.
Even though the weather forecast had been indicating rain the night of the concert, students remained undeterred. In what looked like a flashback to Black Friday, tents and camp chairs lined the street in front of the Hansen Stadium, students waiting to battle for position for the closest positions in the general admission area.
Macklemore, with his experiences in the music world, has seen a lot of people get caught up in drugs, and has a strong anti-drug theme in his music. Furthermore, in songs such as “Same Love,” he pushes for tolerance and a sense of humanistic unity. To many fans, this is a breath of fresh air from the normal themes of violence and drug advocacy rampant in the hip-hop music culture.
“Music is my creative outlet in terms of expressing what is important to me; what has importance, what has a value.” Macklemore said. “And I want to be respected for that.”
Further breaking the hip-hop culture norms, Macklemore is a self-signed artist, as opposed to signing with one of the large record labels. This creates a lot of off-stage work for artists, but evades the division of revenue and lack of control.
“The reason why I dig Macklemore and really pushed to be on this show was because he is independent,” DJ Marcus Wing said. “He built his own brand and pushed his own thing. That’s someone I can respect. I really respect him as an artist.”
The show was an official stop in the MTV-U Woodies Tour, a series of shows featuring music that appeals to the college demographic. Macklemore will also perform at The University of North Colorado and Northern Arizona University as part of the tour.
Lewis had suffered a ruptured ear drum prior to the show, but the show still went on. The two even stayed for a meet and greet with select fans, before rushing to Las Vegas to get medical attention before their show in Arizona the next day. Independent artists tend to make more sacrifices to assure a great performance, and Macklemore and Ryan Lewis are no exception.
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