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Macklemore is a busy guy. He performs close to 200 shows a year and is constantly juggling the responsibilities that are part of the package deal of being an international superstar. But this past weekend the rapper quietly slipped away to visit a college student, Sam, in the hospital.
On his site, Macklemore explained that one of Sam’s friends emailed him to let him know about Sam’s condition. Until recently, Sam was just another college junior who was probably looking forward to summer and getting ready for his senior year. After getting some blood work done, however, Sam was diagnosed with leukemia. He had to start chemotherapy right away.
Macklemore wrote that Sam’s story really resonated with him: “I can’t imagine being a healthy kid, at the end of my junior year in college, and getting diagnosed with leukemia. It’s one of those stories that reminds you how fragile life is, gives you a reality check on your own issues, and make you appreciate the health of you and your loved ones more than ever.”
He talks about why experiences like visiting Sam in the hospital are so important to him. They bring him “back to a place of gratitude and give life a tangible value, beyond the instant gratification” that his job provides. He calls being a rapper “one of the most narcissistic careers in the world.” It means you are “surrounded by yourself: interviews, Twitter, Facebook, Billboard charts, YouTube plays, shows, the crowds, awards etc…You wake up thinking about you, and go to bed thinking about you. That’s not a good place to be.”
The rapper calls the opportunity a chance to “be of service to someone else” and being “able to realize that my problems are NOTHING compared to what him and his family are going through.” He is grateful, he writes, “to meet Sam and his parents today,” because it made him “feel like a real person.” At the core, that is what he is hoping for, “beyond the music and the accolades...that is what I want out of this life. To feel.”
Photo: Macklemore performing earlier this month at Wellesley College in MA. (Instagram)
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