Rap music used to be the focal point of urban culture. It used to be the crown jewel of the urban community. Today rap music is a far cry from what most of us are able to relate to. The productions in rap music are astounding and some of the best producers in the music industry work in this genre of music. As for the artists in rap music, that couldn’t be further from the truth. When you listen to rap music you don’t hear anything that the listener can take away from it. Yes, the songs are so catchy and the verses are so furious and many of your favorite rappers spit with such intensity now a days that they would body rappers of the past. The only thing that is wrong with the rappers of today is that they don’t have anything to say and honestly, they don’t make great songs. Yes many of today’s most popular artists make radio bangers, but do they make music that will stand the test of time? This can be said about most if not all rappers of today, expect a select few one of which is rapper Kendrick Lamar.
I would describe Kendrick Lamar as a versatile artist though I wouldn’t box him into the category of a rapper. Kendrick is so much more than a rapper. Kendrick Lamar is raps savior and I’m going to take the time to tell you why. Kendrick Lamar has something that most artists lack as he posses the ability to relate to his audience. His music speaks for it self without any sorts of gimmicks or manufactured features. The music that Kendrick Lamar creates is just rap in its earliest form modernized. Rap is a form of story telling and he tells stories that have you coming back for more. H tells the kind of stories that have you thinking at the end of the song, “wow that could be me”. He writes the kind of stories that when he is finished you are forced to reflect on your own life and look to do better in life. Kendrick Lamar gives you the uncomfortable truth in his rhymes. He talks about things that other rappers would never touch on. After listening to a Kendrick album you can’t help but feel that he wants you to take something from it. He doesn’t try to reinforce the status quo that other rappers attempt to on every song. He takes the time to paint pictures that progress the black community and dispel myths that are commonly found in mainstream rap. The artistry found in Kendrick Lamar’s music is unmatched in today’s industry. The only way that you could describe Kendrick Lamar is by saying he is a little bit of everything; he is hood, he is introspective, he is clever, and he is real. Real to the point that he makes songs about the things that you sit and talk to your friends about. Things like the epidemic of young black lesbians i.e., ‘tammys song’. You want to hear a song about the effects of economic policy on the black community, he as a song for that ‘Ronald Reagan era’. You want songs that will tear your heart to shreds, he has those too, “Keshia’s song’ and ‘rotc’. Kendrick Lamar is all-intellectual, he can get ratchet at times but with the utmost class. He comes hard with the track ‘spiteful chant’ which is the perfect song to get ignorant to. Then there are the tracks that I call the “take your breath away” songs such as ‘ADHD’ and ‘Hii power’.
Kendrick Lamar is a mix of everything. He is from all walks of life and he can relate to everyone; the kid from the suburbs, the struggling teenager from the hood, the person who is looking to change his life. Kendrick Lamar just has perspective way beyond his years. Allowing him to relate to everyone, which is why he is the last hope for rap.
- Jason Williams