Macklemore is set to become the latest Seattle musician honored by the Recording Academy for their addiction recovery work. On Tuesday, the academy announced that the homegrown rap star will receive the annual Stevie Ray Vaughan Award from its charity arm, MusiCares.
Macklemore will be recognized during the MusiCares Concert for Recovery, which takes place May 16 in Los Angeles. The annual concert banquet benefits the charity aimed to help music industry professionals with health and wellness issues, including offering addiction recovery programs and providing emergency financial assistance in times of crisis. The award recognizes musicians for supporting MusiCares and helping the broader addiction recovery community.
“Addiction is a disease that can affect anyone, and it takes resources and support to heal,” Macklemore said in a news release. “For me, recovery is a daily priority; without my sobriety everything I care about is at risk.”
Macklemore has long been outspoken about his struggle with addiction, both in and outside of his music. In 2016, the homegrown rap star executive produced the MTV documentary “Prescription for Change” about the opioid epidemic, featuring conversations between him and President Obama, and people in the Seattle area battling addiction. That same year he released his Ariana DeBoo-assisted single “Drug Dealer,” which puts “big pharma” in its cross hairs.
“Macklemore’s artistic gifts are clearly recognized, as evidenced by the celebration of his music by fans all around the world,” said Neil Portnow, outgoing president and CEO of the Recording Academy and MusiCares, in the news release. “In addition to his musical contributions, we’re honoring him for what he has done since the beginning of his career — shine a light on his own struggles with addiction as a beacon of hope for those who suffer. It is a powerful testament to his talent and his generosity of spirit.”
Macklemore is slated to perform at the Concert for Recovery, which is hosted by fellow Washingtonian Joel McHale, though the rest of the lineup is yet to be announced.
The hip-hop heavyweight becomes the fourth Seattle musician to receive the Stevie Ray Vaughan Award, following Chris Cornell, Jerry Cantrell of Alice in Chains and Pearl Jam’s Mike McCready. McCready received last year’s honor during a star-studded ceremony at the Showbox, featuring Nancy Wilson, Duff McKagan, members of Red Hot Chili Peppers and more.