SEATTLE - It is a rare step in the world of hip hop: An artist using music to speak in favor of same-sex relationships.

But that s exactly what Seattle-based rapper Macklemore did in a song called Same Love, which has gained viral status this past week. The artist, whose real name is Ben Haggerty, performed the song with friend and music colleague Ryan Lewis (watch it below).

The accompanying video, which tells the story of a gay couple, sparked a flurry of interest in recent days online. As of Thursday, it was nearing 1.2 million views on YouTube.

Haggerty, through his manager, cited a sore throat as a reason not to comment on Thursday.

Kerri Harrop of Music for Marriage Equality said the issue is very personal to [Macklemore]. He grew up on Capitol Hill. He s got two gay uncles, a gay godfather.

She said Macklemore's song will help reach younger voters who may not be aware that same-sex marriage is on the ballot in November.

Ben has a large reach in young voters, his story is very sincere, said Harrop.

Chip White with Preserve Marriage Washington said he has not watched the video. However, he said he feels his group's message against R-74 is resonating.

We are building enthusiasm. There is a groundswell of support from people who are opposed to redefining marriage, said White.

He also hinted the group will make a strong push in the next couple of weeks. TV ads will educate Washington, White said. There are serious negative impacts if marriage is redefined by society.

A yes vote on R-74 is to uphold the state legislature s vote earlier this year to allow same-sex marriage. A no vote is to overturn it.

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