Fans had been speculating for months whether or not Macklemore would be collaborating with Kesha on his new album, “Gemini.” And, finally they have their answer. Kesha recently made her powerful comeback album, “Rainbow,” with the help of Macklemore’s good friend and creative collaborator, Ryan Lewis. (Read more about Kesha’s single, “Praying,” and her album, “Rainbow”)
Macklemore, on the other hand, dropped the first single from his album, aptly titled “Glorious,” while announcing that he and Ryan Lewis had gone their separate ways for the time being. (Read about Macklemore’s “Glorious” grandmother here)
While fans expressed their sadness at the separation of the dynamic duo, it was clear that this was not the end of their creative collaboration. The music industry is small, after all. Kesha was bound to cross Macklemore’s path at some point, even more so now that she’s working with Ryan Lewis.
In fact, Macklemore reveals to Rolling Stone exactly how their collaboration came about. First, he shares: “Kesha, she is a great spirit. She is someone that I walked into the room and I immediately just caught a vibe with and became friends with pretty instantaneously…” He continues: “She’s a musician, she’s a writer, she’s someone that is not afraid to try ideas in the studio, not afraid to get vulnerable in front of people, not scared to go for the high note when she doesn’t know if she can hit it or not. She is a musician in every sense of the word, and she’s hilarious.”
Kesha was in Seattle recording with Ryan Lewis, and she was having an “off” day at the studio. Since they had immediately “clicked,” he says: “I hit Ryan and was like, ‘Would you mind if hit up Kesha?’ And he was like, ‘Of course not.’”
The single, “Good Old Days,” is exactly what you would expect from a Macklemore-Kesha collaboration. She provides the pipes for the chorus, and Macklemore smoothly raps the verses, each melodic word emphasizing the song’s overarching theme of nostalgia and living in the moment.
The lyrics, in particular, are the most poignant aspect of this track. While this isn’t one of those “dance around and celebrate that we’re living in the now” kind of songs, it’s mellowness gives the retrospective and reflective elements more impact.
In the first verse, Macklemore raps: “Couldn’t wait to get older, couldn’t wait to be some/Now that I’m here, wishing I was still young/Those good old days.” It’s the classic reverse Peter Pan syndrome. Wishing to grow up only to grow up and realize you wish you could be young again.
You can also expect this song to become the unofficial anthem of all high school and university graduates, reliving their own experiences through Macklemore’s tale of high school homecoming, social insecurity, and the regretting his commitment to the “cool” factor.
The song also serves as a cautionary warning to those who tend to romanticize the past. The moments we live in now will soon be the past, and we never actually believe we’re living in the “good old days” as they’re actually occurring. It’s only retrospect that gives us that sense of magic in the past.
As Kesha sagely sings in the chorus: “I wish somebody would have told me, babe/That someday, these will be the good old days.” And now, someone has told us. Time to get off that screen and get out there and live!
Macklemore’s album, “Gemini,” drops TODAY (Sept. 22), so be sure to check that out and stay tuned for a review coming soon!