` Jesusfreakhideout.com: Damac, "For Mama Mac" Review
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JFH Indie Music Spotlight Review

Damac, 'For Mama Mac'
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Damac
For Mama Mac

Street Date: May 14, 2024
Style: Hip Hop / Rap / Grief Therapy
Official Site: Iamdamac.com



Grief is a powerful thing, and for many artists, it's a catalyst for creating something to help process and heal. Sometimes the art is angry and destructive, but for others, particularly Christ-followers, it is redemptive and God-honoring. Damac is a Christian hip hop artist in this exact situation. His forthcoming album, For Mama Mac, is based on the passing of his mother in 2021. Listening to these tracks, it's obvious that this man loved his mother deeply, and one can feel the immense sense of loss and mourning in "June 2nd" and "Proverbs 3." Damac even lets loose a little bit, being open and honest about his struggle with trusting God afterward. But in the end, as his name suggests (Deeply Anointed Music About Christ), For Mama Mac is about the goodness of God, whether it's a song about Damac entrusting Him with his mother's soul or thanking his wife for the love and support while suffering this loss. The album even contains clips of Mama Mac herself, sounding joyful and hopeful, and even quoting Scripture. It's a triumphant record in its glorification of God and its reliance on the hope of everlasting life in Jesus' name. Stylistically, it travels across the spectrum of rap and gospel music. The majority of the album blends hip hop and R&B with a good deal of soul and melody to balance it out. There is a run of trap songs in the back half, though - the style is generally a tough sell for this reviewer, but it may scratch an itch for others, and it works well for the flow of the album. For Mama Mac is an enjoyable rap album that offers solid production with smart rhymes and loads of heart, while ultimately keeping the listener's mind on the love of Christ.

- Review date: 3/10/24, written by Scott Fryberger of Jesusfreakhideout.com



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JFH Staff's Second Opinion

JFH Indie Spotlight Review     Michael Lacoste aka Damac (Deeply Anointed Music About Christ) is a hip-hop artist from St. Louis, MO. His newest album is an ode to the loving memory of his mother, Sheila. Each song is connected to her story as the lyrics in the songs celebrate her life, look at grief, focus on loss, and rely on faith. The album truly runs the gamut of emotions.

"For Mama Mac" is a happy track celebrating Sheila Sharp; "June 2nd" is a heartbreaking song about her disease and death in 2021; "Proverbs 3" features anger and trying to process the loss; "The Alter" looks at regret for lost opportunities and moments, but also sees him reaching to God for comfort. That's just the front half of the album, but it's often a gut punch with a mix of joy and sadness. "Rise" is a triumphant anthem that hits hard as Damac rises above the grief through the power of Jesus Christ. "Labels" is my personal favorite. The track is less directly related to his mother, but does show him in the aftermath coming back to his ministry as a rapper. The second verse has Damac sarcastically rapping, "I'm not a Christian rapper, I'm a rapper that's a Christian and I'm tripping and whipping; give my song a listen. I believe in Jesus, but I don't wanna offend, so I never rap about Him in the songs I'm featured in," as he goes on to proudly proclaim, "Label me a Jesus freak; label me an outcast. Label me a sinner; label me a low-class. Label me a church boy; label me a loser…" This is an old topic, but still a touchy one to some artists. I appreciate the realness Damac comes with on this one. "Won't He Do It" ends the trio of huge sounding, big bass hits rap anthems. "Da Queen" goes to a more emotional place again. The song is dedicated to his wife - who he married less than 3 months before his mother died. The lyrics lift up his wife as his queen, and how she was there for him even when he was depressed and difficult to deal with. Finally, "Psalm 30" ends the album with a Motown/R&B feel. Damac raps over a smooth beat and musical backdrop as he exclaims, "The sun is gonna shine again" as he's come out the other side.

For Mama Mac is a deeply personal and moving album. Damac has clearly laid his heart and soul out there. While his lyrics alone are powerful, the included clips of his mother speaking interspersed throughout the entire album add another dimension that could've never been reached otherwise. These clips tie everything together and make the story feel real to an outsider who didn't live the events first hand. This album is perfect for your friend or loved one that is experiencing grief and/or loss in their life right now. It's also a solid hip-hop album by its own merit. - Review date: 3/24/24, written by Michael Weaver of Jesusfreakhideout.com

 



. Record Label: None
. Album length: 9 tracks
. Street Date: May 14, 2024

  1. For Mama Mac (2:48)
  2. June 2 (3:57)
  3. Proverbs 3 (4:04)
  4. The Alter (3:35)
  5. Rise (2:41)
  6. Labels (3:15)
  7. Won't He Do It (2:57)
  8. Da Queen (4:38)
  9. Psalm 30 (6:22)
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  • Jesus Freak Hideout (Scott Fryberger): This is obviously a very personal album for you. When and why did you decide to tell this story through your music?

    Damac: Music has always been a way to express myself. I've written a lot of songs from a vulnerable place. Losing my Mother has been the hardest thing that I've ever experienced. Putting it into the music has almost been therapeutic.

  • JFH (Scott): What do you hope that this album will accomplish when it's released?

    Damac: To be a light. To give hope. Only JESUS can bring true healing. I just hope this album will be the soundtrack to your healing journey.

  • JFH (Scott): Did you have any reservations about reliving the story to create the album?

    Damac: I knew I wanted to do this (make an album dedicated to her). I didn't have any reservations in the beginning. I also didn't know how hard it would be until I heard her voice in the studio for the first time. I bawled my eyes out. It's getting easier though.

  • JFH (Scott): There's a very clear arc that takes the listener from grief to sadness to anger all the way back to acceptance, trusting and honoring the Lord in the end. Was this intensional or did you write songs as you were in each place?

    Damac: I actually sat with the idea for about six months. I couldn't put words to paper, but I knew I wanted to tell a cohesive story. My Mother filmed a testimony video back in 2018. I reached out to the videographer and he still had her audio files. He sent the files to me. I built the album around her. Once I had her audio to listen to, I got inspired. I wrote the entire album in two days.

  • JFH (Scott): You got to work with a high-profile producer in Jonny Grande. How did you two link up, and how was the experience working with him?

    Damac: The legendary Jonny Grande! I met Jonny back in 2015 when I got booked to open for Derek Minor. He was Derek's DJ at the time. We got connected from there. He's produced my last four projects. We've developed a solid chemistry over the years. And we're actually friends, so there is a mutual respect/ love for each other. I love working with him. He is incredible at what he does.

  • JFH (Scott): The album is stylistically diverse within the realm of hip hop. What artists have inspired the sound of your music?

    Damac: I'm really into film scores. Hans Zimmer in particular. I love how his scores take you on a journey. Growing up, I really enjoyed Kanye's production/ diverse musicality. I accepted Christ as my Savior in college. "After the Music Stops" by Lecrae was the first CHH album that I ever owned. His boldness about his faith inspired me.

  • JFH (Scott): Since For Mama Mac is a bit of a concept album, do you have any plans for live performances where you perform the album front-to-back?

    Damac: I'm currently touring right now. I'm going straight to my supporter's homes and putting on "Mama Mac Listening Parties" where I play the album from front-to-back. We then have discussions about it. It's been awesome! I'm also working on the Mama Mac live show that I'll do once the album is out.

  • JFH (Scott): In what ways have you grown as a Christian and/or an artist through the creation of this album?

    Damac: My faith has grown tremendously through this process. The more I think about how God has carried me and guided me through this season, the more my gratitude grows.

    As an artist, I feel like I've grown in my transparency / realness. No mask. No deception. Just real, raw lyrics.

  • JFH (Scott): Is there anything else you'd like to add?

    Damac: I think every artist has aspirations of creating something that will impact people. I hope this is that project. I hope it hits you, encourages you, and most importantly, points you to Jesus.

     

     

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