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  • Writer's pictureWAEVZ AU

INTERVIEW: GHO$T MAC®400 breaks down his artist name & finding purpose through hip-hop

We spoke with GHO$T MAC®400 about his journey into music, the meaning of his unique artist name and his ambitions for the future. He also shares the story of his love song ‘Raining Outside’ featuring Boyboy expected to drop on Friday.

Perth based rapper and song writer GHO$T MAC®400 has announced he will be dropping his first single in over a year and a half this Friday.

The single, entitled ‘Raining Outside’, features fellow West Australian artist Boyboy and is a track which traverses themes of love and heartbreak. “I wrote this song while I was in love, but the love was fading. Even though it’s about pain and the sad side of love, I feel like whenever you’re feeling any type of love you can write about both the good and bad parts. At least for me that’s usually how I find inspiration, from living through something [and experiencing the positives and the negatives] and using that as a way to tell the story.”

GHO$T MAC stepped into the Perth music scene two years ago, but his story began in Tweed Valley in New South Wales. He was born and raised in Mount Burrell inland of Byron Bay before his family moved to Karratha in WA when he was 12 years old. When he was 16, they moved again but to Spain for just over a year for GHO$T MAC to play high grade competitive soccer. He briefly returned to Karratha before going back overseas, leaving his family behind in Australia this time to live in England for two years.

Growing up, GHO$T MAC was largely soccer-orientated for a long time with strong dreams of building a career playing the sport, so much so he “never gave music any time of day”. He slowly fell out of love and lost passion for the sport and returned to Australia where he’s resided in Perth for the past three years.

His close friend DEEZY®400 had started making music and rapping and GHO$T was immediately intrigued by the art as a result. GHO$T says it didn’t take long for him to realise, “This is for me. This is what I was put on this Earth for.” He eventually asked DEEZY, “Should I rap?” And without hesitation he affirmed his newfound purpose. “Praise to DEEZY for being the first believer, the first green light.”

GHO$T MAC describes his parents as wonderfully supportive, which is indicative in their decision to uproot their lives and their family to move to the other side of the world for GHO$T MAC’s potential acceptance into a top-tier soccer club. His mother used to be a music manager, and his father is a musician himself, so they were both highly encouraging of GHO$T establishing himself as an artist. GHO$T attributes his family’s musicality in addition to his friendship with DEEZY as being critical in shaping him into being a product of his surroundings.

The name ‘GHO$T MAC®400’, which he releases music under, is a collage of significant aspects in the up-and-coming artist’s life. “I still feel like the name ‘GHO$T MAC’ has so many colours and meanings it’s yet to touch that I just haven’t found yet. I feel the meaning of my name changes as I’m learning and progressing through life,” he says.

He explains the roots of the name originated in his small hometown where chatter and gossip are customary and any individuals pursuing extraordinary things, such as himself, are the hottest topic. “When I first left Australia for Spain to play football, I had close friends that would tell me what was being said about me by people I thought were my friends. From people around my age (15-17 years old) all the way up to fully grown adults. It’s a small town so it got around and it kinda made it feel like I was always being spoken about without actually being there, like a ghost.”

GHO$T MAC says he had the idea to use the name ‘ghost’ in his head while he was spending time abroad. The ‘mac’ part of the name is derived from his legal surname McCarthy, shortened to sentimentally copy his father’s artist name Johnnie Mac, and the dollar sign replacing the ‘S’ is a nod towards the financial stability GHO$T MAC hopes to achieve in his pursued career. The ‘400’ is his creative collective with artist DEEZY®400 and director Caleb®400. “20/20 vision is the best vision you can have, so we figured 20 multiplied by 20 is 400,” he says, explaining the shared creative vision the three of them are chasing and manifesting.

“I feel like I want to be Banjo one day, who knows if that’ll come to fruition, but it’s definitely something I have thought about. But for now, GHO$T MAC®400 is not even halfway through the first chapter and has so many more stories to tell,” he says

GHO$T has a special flair to his sound that is unlike anyone else making music out of Perth. “I find it hard to describe my music because everything I make almost has its own sound, everything has a different colour… it’s kind of like a giant rainbow. One day might be blue, the next might be red. You can always expect something out of pocket or different when I’m releasing.”

He continues to say his mentality allows him to capture and express his personal experiences and stories within his music, with his songs emerging from a place of motivation, confidence, and self-belief. “A lot of artists do one sound repeatedly and then when they start bubbling, they find a sound that resonates with them a little bit more and start going down that avenue leaving the day 1 fans thinking they changed. So, by me coming onto the scene and conditioning my fans with an array of different music, it allows me to always have that freedom to do what I want when I want.”

Photo by @xsrxh_

GHO$T says since his last single ‘RUN’ dropped, he fell into a dark period and experienced writer’s block. “I was struggling to find myself and the purpose with music and if that’s really what I want to do,” he says. He continued performing gigs and doing shoots throughout the past year, and is now thrilled to announce his single ‘Raining Outside’.

“The ‘Raining Outside’ concept came from the first time I ever felt love, or what I thought was at least close to love. I remember it was literally raining outside and I was walking through the rain. One night later down the track, I was sitting in my home studio in the middle of winter, and it was raining outside again. I opened a beat Sowdy had sent me and immediately used the words, “it’s raining outside” and created a melody.”

GHO$T MAC says he immediately began recording the song and freestyled a hook, allowing the track to naturally take a direction without too much over thinking. “I knew from the get-go it was going to be a love song just from the vibe of the beat and the melody was soft and soothing. When you mix that with the raining outside ambiance, it just made me feel at home and happy and in love. But also, simply in love with the feeling of potentiality because I felt like I had captured my exact feeling in that moment and the rest of the lyrics just flowed so naturally it felt like I wasn’t even the one coming up with it.”

GHO$T says he wanted a feature on the song and needed someone who would add emotional value to the track. Boyboy was the artist GHO$T believed could complete his vision for ‘Raining Outside’. “I feel like he makes real music and I’m really inspired by the sounds he creates. Plus, I just knew his cadence and tone would fit perfectly with what I was wanting for the track. That homely warm sort of personal love feeling. He killed it and I’m super happy with the turnout.”

GHO$T MAC says his current ambition is to become the biggest independent artist out of Australia. “I can see myself being a mainstream rapper/artist in all markets – I want to touch everywhere and the hearts of everyone. I think I have a unique story to share and a unique way of thinking with a message that can be relatable to a lot of people. I want to inspire, I want to perform, I want it all.”

“I really don’t care much for the accolades, I just want people to hear me and be inspired. So many dope people my age quit too soon, and I want to show that you can get anywhere with hard work, persistence and delusional self-belief. In the next few years, I see myself on the top of the world but as long as I’m making music, I’m complete. I know I’ll make it so it’s only a matter of when.”

Words by Livdaangel

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