Rapper Macklemore released a free nine-minute song on iTunes today called "White Privilege II" in which he name drops celebrities like Miley Cyrus and Iggy Azalea, accusing them of cultural appropriation. It's a follow up to "White Privilege," a track on The Heist, and it references Macklemore's involvement with the #BlackLivesMatter movement.
The verse that calls out other musicians goes:
You've exploited and stolen the music, the moment," he raps at one point. "The magic, the passion, the fashion, you toy with / The culture was never yours to make better...
You're Miley, you're Elvis, you're Iggy Azalea/ Fake and so plastic, you've heisted the magic/ You've taken the drums and the accent you rapped in/ You're branded 'hip-hop,' it's so fascist and backwards.
This is confusing for many, because Macklemore is a white rapper who is often pointed to as an example of a white person being more successful than a black person in the hip-hop and rap industry. Anyway, here's the song, and it's a roller coaster of emotions:
The Internet has exploded with opinions on the song that range from, "you are the problem" to "you are the solution" to "you are terrible at music, who cares what your songs are about." For example:
Some conjectured that an earlier tweet from Iggy Azalea was a response to the verse:
And that would be very funny! But then she actually responded:
Yet another example of the dichotomy that is Macklemore: he hates white privilege, but he is steeped in it. He hates Iggy Azalea, but he is happy to pose with her at events. He's almost as complicated as racism.