Tom MacDonald

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A controversial firebrand, Los Angeles-based rapper Tom MacDonald has reached millions of like-minded fans with his politically charged lyrics and outspoken attitude. Emerging in the early 2010s as a streaming video personality, he gained notoriety in the middle of the decade; intentionally confrontational and striving for profundity, tracks such as “Dear Rappers,” “Whiteboy,” and “No Lives Matter” built a devoted following and plenty of criticism. Fiercely independent, he self-released the late-2010s albums Deathreats and Ghostories, courting both controversy and curiosity with each passing release. By 2022, he had scored a trio of hits on the U.S. singles chart while also making his first appearance on the U.S. and Canadian album charts with his Adam Calhoun collaboration The Brave, followed by Renegade and The Revolution.
Hailing from Edmonton, Alberta, MacDonald got his start in the entertainment business as a professional wrestler in his native Canada. At the close of the 2000s, he switched his focus to rap, taking inspiration from artists such as 2Pac and Marilyn Manson. His debut full-length, LeeAnn’s Son, arrived in 2014, with additional mixtapes and efforts following. At this point, his style was defined by vaguely trap-adjacent production and lyrical content that stuck to the standard partying, sex, and drugs material. However, by the late 2010s, he began to switch up his approach, adopting an image that spoke to a core audience attracted to his politically incorrect lyrics and underdog status. Going on the offense, he took aim at everything from other emcees and the rap game (“Dear Rappers,” “Exposure,” “Sad Rappers”) to society (“Everybody Hates Me”) and contemporary culture (“Politically Incorrect”). On 2019′s “Straight White Male,” he rapped, “I’m not a racist/I like Hispanics and Negroes and Natives and Asians,” racking up as many views and streams as outraged headlines. Audience in hand, he continued with “If I Was Black,” an alternate-universe examination wherein MacDonald wondered how difficult life would be if he wasn’t born white.
In 2020, at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, he released the self-serious “Coronavirus,” which dug into conspiracy theories involving the government and media, generating another hit with his fans. Additional tracks like “People So Stupid” and “Fake Woke” were streamed in the millions. That latter track joined “Snowflakes” and “Brainwashed” as MacDonald’s first appearances on the Billboard Hot 100, which all occurred in 2021. The following year, he teamed with American country-rapper Adam Calhoun for The Brave, his first effort to hit the U.S. and Canadian album charts. Two more albums arrived in November, 2022 with Renegade and The Revolution; the former of which spawned the singles “Sheeple” (which hit 33 on Billboard’s Hot Rock & Alternative Songs chart) and “Fighter” (which hit 14 on the Hot Digital Songs chart). In 2023, he paired with John Rich for the song “End of the World. ~ TiVo Staff