I always feel like my random ventures end up leading me towards crazy stories and good times. Here is the story of my first night in Vancouver which ended up leading me towards meeting my favorite hip-hop artist!
The hostel where I was staying was right behind the venue, Five Sixty. I was in Vancouver and my favorite hip hop artist, Macklemore (Ben Haggerty) and his producer, Ryan Lewis were going to take stage later that same night. A few days prior I had planned on taking a ferry from Seattle to Victoria but when I found out that the inspirational and raw lyricist and his soulful music producer were playing in Vancouver, of course my plans changed. I bought my ticket to the show along with a 6 hour bus ticket northbound.
I was there with a group of people at 7:00pm when the doors opened and immediately made a new group of friends. We headed in, enjoyed a couple of beers from the local Granville Island Brewery and awaited in anticipation for the start of the show.
With beer in hand I meandered through the club/venue socializing with everybody I had met, which included locals and some students from Washington who had previously organized Macklemore coming to their campus. As I socialized, a man confronted me and started asking me questions and for my opinion on the venue and event. I was surprised to find out that he was the promoter and organizer for the show that evening.
He soon left to do his thing, I grabbed another drink and headed back into the crowd of new friends and acquaintances who were getting more antsy by the minute.
Finally after much time, the opening act came on and the people started going nuts. Song after song everybody started crowding in, knowing that Macklemore and Ryan Lewis were coming on next. The opening act (which was pretty good) ended, people grabbed drinks, fought for position in the pit of people and finally with an uproarious applause greeted Macklemore to the stage. The guys of course rocked the show, vibing with the crowd and putting all of their heart and energy into it.
I remember having a conversation with a friend at one time about concerts that we’ve been to and differences among genres and artists. I love going to concerts and always tend to have an energy high afterward for a few days. I have to say though, most concerts that I go to I end up leaving on an energy high for days where when I go to a Macklemore show I end up leaving inspired for weeks to months. The guys on stage as a collective put so much passion into what they do and it permeates through every aspect of their music, whether it’s sound, video or performance.
The show ends and the crowd is on a high and beginning to flock to the merchandise table at the back of the venue. One of the coolest things about Macklemore and Ryan Lewis is that after their shows, they stick around, talk and sign every piece of merchandise bought by the fans. Even though I already owned digital copies of their cd’s, I bought a hard copy after the show and stuck around to have them sign it. Here is where the story starts getting better…
As I was standing in line for an autograph, this guy standing nonchalant in the corner with a camera leans into me and mentions he’s followed Macklemore since early on in his career and had met him before.
We start talking and I come to find out that he is a hip-hop interviewer from Vancouver who was planning on interviewing Macklemore after all the signings. I talked to him a bit more about what he does then mentioned my website to him. I explained how I try to writer stories about places I see and people I meet in hopes that it may at some point motivate or inspire people to go out and see the world around us. Whether it’s a new place to eat, somewhere to travel to or something new to try.
I followed up by asking if I could have the chance to sit in on the interview with him and Macklemore. He said he was cool with it as long as I got the okay from Macklemore’s side. I walk to the back of the merch table and introduce myself to Tricia, Macklemore’s girlfriend, and briefly explained my site and how I was hoping to sit in on the interview. I got the approval, went back to tell the interviewer, than waited for Macklemore to finish up with the autographs.
After signing the last item, his friend, myself and Macklemore head up the sectioned off private balcony above the venue. The interviewer pulls out his camera only find out that we couldn’t do it considering the low light and loud music. We decide to migrate to the hallway outside of the room which ends up being more quiet but just as dark. The interviewer appears a little flustered realizing that the hallway won’t work either.
This is when it gets a little funny and Macklemore suggests going into the restroom around the corner, guessing the light and sound would be better.
So the four of us crowd into this tiny, somewhat gloomy, green tiled restroom for this interview. This entire time I’m stoked, here I am about to stand in on an interview with my favorite artist.
Of course, comedy filled life, leads us to this cramped restroom for all of this to happen. So we’re standing in the rest room which is an upgrade in light but still has music playing. Not just any music either… it was like a techno pop porn mix coming in through the rest room speakers. Listening in on the interview and thinking about how funny it would be to hear that in the background in the interview I take a step to the side…whoooooshshshshshshshoooooshshshsh!
Buahaha I had stood in front of a motion sensor toilet! We’re in the middle of an interview as this thing goes off… The interviewer and guy holding the mic act like they didn’t notice a thing. Macklemore looks over at me, we look at the toilet, and start laughing a little bit. He continued on with the interview as I stood there with a cheesy Oops looking grin on my face. We ended the interview, took a few pictures, talked a bit and then headed out…
Who knew that a random trip to Seattle would lead me to stand in on an interview with my favorite artist in Vancouver! It’s funny how things happen and what life brings our way. It’s definitely an experience that I’ll remember for a long time.
Check out Macklemore and Ryan Lewis’s newest video below. Also, check out Macklemore.com for a list of tour cities and dates!