Indio, CA – It’s been a week since Kendrick Lamar dropped his full-length solo project DAMN. and obviously, he’s cemented his status as this generation’s GOAT if critics or potential first week sales have anything to say.
But Top Dawg Entertainment’s flagship MC has been relatively quiet when it comes to interviews.
That ended today following a Beats 1 sitdown with Zane Lowe. The two met up ahead of Lamar’s second closing set at Coachella in Indio, CA.
So you don’t have to, HipHopDX picked out the 10 best moments from the interview.
The Thematic Difference Between To Pimp A Butterfly & DAMN.
“The best way for me to put it: To Pimp A Butterfly would be the idea of the thought of changing the world and how we worked and approach things,” he said. “DAMN. would be the idea I can’t change the world until I change myself.”
The Internet’s Reaction To DAMN.
“The internet is a tricky place and the way our minds work in a psychological matter, we’re only going to see the good things anyway. We’re going to block out the negative things. Everybody’s not going appreciate and I know how it works. I don’t even want to gravitate towards it. I want to go out there and see if you’re sitting out in the crowd looking at me with the mummy face or are you enjoying yourself?”
The Donald Trump References
“I wanted more self-evaluation and discipline, because what’s going on now. We’re not focusing on him. What’s going on now — we focusing on self. You see real different nationalities and cultures are coming together and actually standing up for themselves and I think that’s a pure reflection of this record prior to this even happening prior to even coming out. We say OK we can’t control — now we see we can control what’s going on out there. It was a whole ‘nother power that be so what we can do now is we can start coming together and figuring out our own problems and home solutions. You know I think, I believe, I know, this is what this album reflects.”
The On-Wax Response To Geraldo Rivera
“I thought it was a trip, that it was clickbait, because anybody that know me they know that you know I represent my people, you know, and the culture the right way so to try and attack my character and make it an actual stunt. I wasn’t for it.”
Finding Out About The Events Around “Duckworth.”
“About a year after I met Top Dawg. I met him when I was 16. My pops came to the studio after I’d been locked in with him for a minute and we got a relationship now — bring my pops through. He heard I was dealing with Top Dawg but my pops personally don’t know him as Top Dawg, the industry know him as Top Dawg … So when he walked in that room and he seen that Top Dawg was this guy, he flipped. Still till this day they laugh and they laugh and they trip out and they tell the same story over and over to each other.”
Meeting Former President Barack Obama
“A lot of times, being a kid when he was elected, not a kid just a younger adult, we get the idea — well, I got the idea that shit was going to do a 360 like that. So me having a conversation with him and him sitting me down, he says, ‘Change doesn’t start while I’m here, it starts once we leave the space that we’re in.'”
Rihanna’s Feature On “Loyalty.”
“I love everything about her. Her artistry, how she represents women to not only be themselves but to express themselves the way she expresses herself through music, and how she carries herself. I love everything about her so I always wanted to work with her.”
“DNA.” Was A Reflection Of Lessons Learned From Ice Cube
“[Ice Cube] said if your first opening lines don’t grab the listener, it ain’t shit. It has to be a statement. I don’t care if the statement is blunt or the statement is held back. People are going to feel it if they know it’s real and you. It’s three types of themes in that record. It’s me recognizing the world around me. It’s me recognizing the lifestyle that I’ve grown to see and indulge in from time to time from a famous perspective. To coming to grips with the idea of knowing who man — man was as a seven-year-old boy and figuring out who they see as Kendrick Lamar. Taking all these different aspects and personalities from my own perspective and soul and putting them on record.”
Kendrick’s Thoughts On Religion
“We’re all spiritual beings period. That’s something I can never run from in my music. I use it as a weapon using the line that you referenced. I always felt as if God used me as a vessel period whether to show my flaws or tote my intellect or to show my pain or my hurt. To share my stories. To share his message all across the board. I can say the nastiest thing on record, but I still feel like as a vessel, you need to hear that cause I can’t sugarcoat the reality of what’s going on. I can’t sugarcoat the reality of my imperfections. If you hear something and are made uncomfortable, these are his words. These aren’t made up words. These are ideas coming way beyond me. That’s how I’ve always felt about it since day one.”
Kid Capri Was One Of The First Ideas For DAMN.
“Funny thing is that it was one of the first ideas for this record. I wanted it to feel like just the raw elements of Hip Hop whether I’m using 808s or some boom-bap jumps. The idea of having Kid Capri was originally on some trap type feel. I had him in the studio doing like a thousand takes. He’s the greatest to ever even do it. He knocked them shits out. He’s there and he’s rocking.”
Read DX’s review of DAMN. here.