Remembering Mac Miller: 1992-2018

Headlines 08/09/2018

It was reported earlier today that Rapper Mac Miller was found dead on Friday of an apparent overdose.

The 26-year-old was found in his California home, although further information is yet to be released surrounding the nature and cause of the death.

It is a sad day for Hip-Hop, a sad day for music, so instead of mourning the passing of a rapper, we want to celebrate the life of an icon.

Tributes have flown in from fans and celebrities alike, all expressing the profound impact Miller had on their lives.

Born and raised in Pittsburgh, Miller released his first mixtape in 2007 age 15, which eventually saw him signed to independent label Rostrum Records in 2009.

His first viral success came with his 2011 track "Donald Trump" (earning himself a lawsuit threat from the current US President in the process) which was shortly followed up by "Knock Knock," and then eventually his debut album Blue Slide Park.

The album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 charts, making it the first independently produced and distributed project of the 21st century to achieve such a feat.

Already a star at age 20, Miller would not release another project until 2013's Watching Movies With the Sound Off, which was followed up by the critically adored GO:OD AM in 2014.

His 2014 album saw him alter his style from his former "frat boy chique" days, to open up to more diverse and unique sounds, collaborating with artists such as Miguel, Ab-Soul, Lil B and Chief Keef. Miller also began implementing his more jazz-centric sampling and production in the same album, something he would heavily develop on in his forthcoming projects.

2013 saw Miller's first crossover into mainstream markets with his guest verse on Ariana Grande's breakout hit "The Way," which saw the two artist's put their obvious chemistry on display for the first time.

That chemistry would eventually result in a relationship between the two rising stars in 2016, which saw the eventual release of The Divine Feminine album and a second collaborative track between the two with "My Favourite Part."

The pair would eventually split in May of 2018, and Miller released his final project, Swimming, in August of the same year. His last project was perhaps his most intimate, thought-provoking and personal, which saw it receive the best reviews of his career.

Miller had always expressed his struggle with substances, touching on it in a 2015 interview with Billboard: "I was doing a lot of drugs around that time, which is another difference now: I’m not doing as many drugs," Miller said. 

It just eats at your mind, doing drugs every single day, every second. It’s rough on your body.

Mac Miller's legacy is unprecented, a pioneer of the underground and a true artist, his spirit lives on through his music, immortalising him as one of the great wordsmith's of our time.

Moe mai ra e tama.

 

If you, or someone you know, is struggling with substance addiction or abuse, call the Alcohol and Drug Helpline on 0800 787 797, or click here to go to their website for more information.