With last week marking the two year anniversary of Mac Miller’s death I randomly heard one of his best songs on my shuffle: PA Nights. After years spent building buzz through mixtapes and YouTube music videos, Mac dropped his debut album Blue Slide Park in 2011. The album received mixed reviews, but PA Nights was a gem that offered a glimpse into the more insightful tracks he would become known for later.
Music taste is subjective so I understand people that like, love, or loathe Mac, but this was an artist that I listened to a ton in my formative years of college. He also had yet to hit mainstream so it was one of those artists that you feel sort of “in the club” with when they do finally hit it big. Then he released Blue Slide Park when I was living on my own after graduating from college and working a shit job in a state that I’d never spent more than a few hours at a time. I think thats how people form connections with music; some song or album becomes the soundtrack for a moment in your life and the two are forever fused together.
A lot of Blue Slide Park was Mac Miller appeasing the masses with the party music that was expected of him at the time. But it also sounded like a kid just trying to deal with all the changes in his life as a result of growing up.
Mac eventually got away from the frat rap that he became known for on K.I.D.S. and Best Day Ever as he made more experimental and at times depressing works like Watching Movies With the Sound Off and his legitimately soulful Swimming. And if you’re still not feeling misty eyed remembering Mac, his last album Circles was released posthumously by his family along with this note.