3 April 2013
For this paper, I chose the rising star of hip hop and rap, Kendrick Lamar. I picked Kendrick for this paper because he is one of my favorite artists that I have listened to and I started to listen to him before he got famous and well-known. What separates Kendrick from other rappers is that every song he makes has a story that portrays him and is as real as it gets. Kendrick Lamar, in my eyes, is one of the best rappers of this incoming generation of hip hop.
Kendrick Lamar was born in Compton, California, to parents that were from the Chicago area. Growing up, Kendrick was a straight A student in school and also had a great love for music. Music was an escape for him as he tried to stay out of the gang life that had conquered the West Coast back in the 80’s and early 90’s. He was inspired by some of the greats in rap at the time, Tupac and Dr. Dre. At the age of 16, Kendrick released his first mix tape, Young Head N**** In Charge, under the name K-Dot. The mix tape gained local attention, which got him signed with independent record label Top Dawg Entertainment. He then released a few other mix tapes that started to gain a lot of attention on the west coast, such as Training Day and C4, which is a remake of the album Tha Carter 3 by Lil’ Wayne.
He didn’t get noticed by big time artists until his mix tape Overly Dedicated hit online in 2011. Dr. Dre, his inspiration for going into rapping, listened to it and instantly wanted to work with him. Kendrick went on to sign with his record label, Aftermath Entertainment, and changed his rap name to his legal name. While working with Aftermath, he released his project Section.80 and went on tour in 2012 in the Under The Influence Tour. The project and tour would eventually lead up to his acclaimed hit album, good kid, m.A.A.d city. This album includes top hits “Swimming Pools” and “Poetic Justice”. good kid, m.A.A.d city debuted at number two on...