Grammy-winning copywriter Macklemore is partnering with longtime friend and collaborator Ryan Lewis for the first time in five years to come up with a thoughtful and upbeat new single and video “NEXT YEAR” with recording artist Windser – available now and everywhere.
Macklemore and Lewis teamed up with director Jason Koenig to write and direct the music video. Koenig works with them a lot as he also shot the videos “Can’t Hold Us” and “Downtown”.
After the tenth anniversary of his award-winning debut The Heist and four years since Macklemore’s last studio LP Gemini, which peaked at number 2 on the Billboard 200, with cuts with performances by Skylar Gray, Lil Yachty, Offset, Kesha and more – with a view to 2022 Macklemore has returned with an anthemic track that is true to its ethos, supported by an up-and-coming Windser-led choir who impresses on us: “The next year will be better than that!”
Paired with a hilarious and metaphorical image that shows that our Seattle-based emcee not only survived the city’s beloved gray skies, but also car accidents and even the birth of a new baby with his wife, who may or may not be his neighbor’s. There’s even a deluge of stray golf balls that land at his feet, reminding us of the strength of the rapper’s ability to not only stay in the driver’s seat of life despite everything, but also his self-esteem and ability to feel about himself making fun of himself and making his own best plans – a funny nod to his own acclaimed golf apparel brand Bogey Boys.
He shares the song with an album special that is very dear to the rapper’s heart: “This is the first new music I’ve released in a while, and I got the chance to work on the production again with my guy Ryan Lewis.” The Seattle host continues: “Ryan first played this to me in his car, as a rough demo, but it immediately stood out. I then quickly wrote a few verses and went to LA to record. At first I was a little scared, but when we started the creative process it felt like we hadn’t missed a day. “
“I remember playing the demo for ‘Next Year’ in the car for Ben and he just lit up,” said Lewis. “We hadn’t worked together in a few years and each of our processes had grown and developed independently during that time, so it was scary and exciting to see how it would go back to the studio – all in all, it was like having everything changed and yet nothing would have changed at all! The work on the song became the work on the video, which then turned into long nights and lots of laughter. It felt like a fresh start to our creativity and a reminder of the strong power we make together – I missed my guy. “Before the new single, Macklemore and former collaborator Ryan Lewis released their second joint work, This Unruly Mess I. ‘ve Made, another top 5 hit on the charts that also featured a number of contributions from the likes of Idris Elba, Ed Sheeran, Chance The Rapper, Anderson.Paak, Kool Moe Dee and Grandmaster Caz.
“There aren’t many people who know me as well as Ryan,” says Macklemore. “We spent almost a decade together every day, making music, making videos, touring and everything else. We took a long break, of course, but we were able to go straight back to the same room. ”He continues:“ I think we both didn’t really get into it, but I had a lot of fun the whole time. I love the way his brain works with all things art related and it was refreshing to connect with that is my brother for life and I am really proud of what we are going to do for ‘Next Year ‘thought up. “
The duo are also known for giving us an infectious chorus, and they do that, including Windser! “I love Windser’s voice and energy on this song,” notes Macklemore. “He originally only recorded a reference demo, but Ryan and I loved him from the start on this album. He did it and his performance fits the message of the song perfectly. I have to say he’s a talented and humble guy and I look forward to more people getting to know him. “
“I have respected his music, independence and artistry for a long time and was thrilled to be part of a song that appeals to me so strongly,” says Windser, beaming the collaboration. “The past few years have not been easy, but I firmly believe that the next few years will be better and that we will come out stronger from these times. It’s a real honor to have worked with Macklemore on Next Year. ‘
Looking ahead to 2022, Macklemore promises to reach new heights and create a more refined sound and message in the face of these trials and tribulations.
Check out the new music video for the track here: