Kendrick Lamar shares isight into "The Blacker The Berry," the "therapy" of "To Pimp A Butterfly," and being introduced to new fans through "Bad Blood".
As much as Kendrick Lamar's To Pimp A Butterfly has been talked about, by critics, fans, and Kendrick himself, we're still learning new things about the album each time it's brought up. Seeing that it's probably the densest rap album in recent memory, it's not exactly surprising, and we're eager to hear Lamar reveal more of its intricacies in every interview.
Speaking with the Guardian, the Compton rapper spoke about one of the most aggressive tracks on the album "The Blacker The Berry". While the song clearly deals with race and violence, and even mentions Trayvon Martin by name, Lamar revealed in the interview that the first draft of the record was actually written quite soon after the death of Martin.
Read a few key excerpts from the interview, in which he talks about being inspired to write about tragic events like Trayvon's murder, his early experiences with music, and the strange introduction Taylor Swift's "Bad Blood" will give him to certain listeners.
On writing about Trayvon Martin:
These are issues that if you come from that environment it’s inevitable to speak on. It’s already in your blood because I am Trayvon Martin, you know. I’m all of these kids. It’s already implanted in your brain to come out your mouth as soon as you’ve seen it on the TV. I had that track way before that, from the beginning to the end, and the incident just snapped it for me.
On escaping violence through music:
It was the counterweight to peer pressure. Whenever I wasn’t on the streets with my homeys I was in the studio. It was something that kept me out of trouble. So my mom would let me stay out till four in the morning because she knew I was doing that.
On how listeners discovering him through "Bad Blood" will react to "TPAB":
I don’t know. I know it’ll be challenging for a listener who doesn’t know my music. The process of me making it is the same process the listener’s going to have to deal with, and that’s rolling with it. I had to roll with this record for two years but it was a fun experience. That’s the place I’m putting the listener in.