Only love for Kendrick Lamar.
The 60th annual Grammy Awards are coming up and Billboard has chosen three hopeful nominees for The Best New Artist category to flaunt their latest magazine cover.
SZA, Khalid and Julia Michaels are the three lucky chosen ones to grace the front page, where SZA and Khalid discuss in detail how much they admire the DAMN. rapper, Kendrick Lamar. It comes to no surprise since Kendrick is an easy inspiration since his album has hit 25 weeks on the Billboard Hot 100 list, matching sales of 603,000 units in its first week. He's also a lyrical genius, proven on all his past projects to date.
When Billboard asked the trio which album they are rooting for when it comes to Ed Sheeran's Divide and Kendrick's DAMN., it's an easy answer for SZA and Khalid.
"I don’t know Ed personally, though I love him and his music. But I watched [her Top Dawg labelmate Lamar’s] process -- he’s a true, genuine genius. Dot doesn’t play any instruments, but he designed and produced his whole album. From scratch. Like... it’s too much. It’s too incredible. I’ve never witnessed anyone do that, except for maybe Frank [Ocean]. It’s past due. He’s the most inspiring person I’ve ever met in my entire life," SZA said.
Khalid responded by saying Kendrick's last album was "necessary" especially today, "with the world being in a place that it shouldn’t be."
"...having someone who resembles me, an African-American male, with so much integrity, so much strength, so much sense of self. The fact that he can step up and use his," he added.
The love for Kendrick doesn't stop there, as SZA credits the rapper for making his album sounds so good and hot despite how he talks about some heavy topics. She added: "He somehow manages to be an activist with a platinum album. It’s very rare. Nina Simone talked about [this], the responsibility that we all have as artists to reflect the time, and I always feel like I don’t know what the fuck I’m going to do to reflect it. But Kendrick, I don’t know that he’s thinking about what he can do -- I think he’s just being it. It's coming out of his pores."