Macklemore Talks About His ‘Fear’ Of The Spotlight … And How To Pronounce His Name

He didn't want to be that guy.

Fame and success can be terrifying. Don’t believe it? Just ask Macklemore.

Oh, you can’t ask Macklemore? That’s OK, because someone did during a recent Reddit AMA the Seattle rapped did with Ryan Lewis and Fences. Specifically, whether or not he had any regrets during his rise over the last few years.

“Of course,” he admitted. “I try not to have any regrets. But you learn along the way. When Thrift Shop popped off and went number 1, I wasn’t ready for that. The love, the press, the scrutiny, the attention, lack of privacy. Everything. I went from an underground rapper (which I’d been my whole life) to the spotlight very quickly. So that was tough for me.”

Hard to argue with that. Dude catapulted from a relative unknown — especially outside of hip-hop circles — to a pop star with a song that people far outside his previous audience (like middle-aged women) truly loved. And the content of that song could have — and for a while, did — box him in to the outside, newly-introduced world.

“I had ALL these different songs with varying topics,” he continued. “But most of the world only knew of 1. I was extremely fearful I was going to become the ‘Thrift Shop’ guy forever. But, with ‘Can’t Hold Us’s’ success that dissipated. And with ‘Same Love’s’ success it went away. But I was definitely living in a place of fear for a while.”

“That’s never a good place to be. I turned to some old vices that are never conducive to working through the problem. Just temporary numbing that eventually leads to more fear, anxiety and pain. BUT I’m learning from it. And I try to live my life differently because of that experience. And whenever I’m in a place of fear. I know what helps me get through it, and I know what keeps me there. I have a choice.”

Oh, and he also took his AMA time to clarify one thing: It’s pronounced Mack-la-more.