Kendrick Lamar Breaks His No Interview Policy
"Are you the greatest rapper alive?"
Kendrick Lamar’s DAMN. is an open, emotionally honest album, and right now the Compton spitter appears to be more interested in bearing his soul through his music than through interviews. TDE president Dave Free seemingly confirmed this sentiment when he bluntly tweeted, “No interview” a few weeks before the album’s release.
— Dave Free (@miyatola) March 30, 2017
But now Lamar has given one highly anticipated (and much hyped) interview, candidly talking with Beats 1 host Zane Lowe for 45 minutes. During their conversation, Lamar explained some of the differences behind To Pimp A Butterfly and his newest effort. K.Dot discussed how the previous album was supposed to be a document of its era, like the work of Ice Cube or Common before him. “It’s to help people understand our time”, he said.
DAMN., on the other hand, came from him “dealing with human emotions and coming to grips with them.” He also revealed his writing process as “I sit and think all day. Eighty percent is just me prepping myself.” He says the process can “take months, or it can take two minutes.”
He also says he scrapped a lot of material before DAMN. came to be, and how that its more introspective tone came from dealing with Trump’s victory. “Now we see we can’t control what’s out there,” he explained. “Now we come together and see what we can do ourselves, to our own problems.”
Further topics include his relationship with Mike WiLL Made-It and Barack Obama, why Kid Capri is on the album, and how he welcomes and encourages the endless theorizing and digging through the layers in his lyrics. But as open as Lamar is during their talk, when Lowe asks him to explain the album’s intro of “Is it the beginning of the end or the end of the beginning?” Lamar can’t stifle a laugh before responding, “Come on now, I can’t tell you that!”
You can check out the full video interview in the video here.