Kendrick Lamar Discusses the Discomfort of Success in New ‘NPR’ Interview
A quick glance at any number of year-end lists for 2015 will reveal that hip-hop artist Kendrick Lamar's To Pimp a Butterfly is named one of the best albums, or at least one of the best songs/music videos, of the year. TPAB also received a total of eleven Grammy nominations, including Best Album, Best Song and Best Rap Performance.
Although 2015 has been a champion year for Lamar, life hasn't always been so picture-perfect, as his recent interview with NPR's David Greene reveals. Growing up in Compton, California, in the '80s and '90s, Lamar had the unfortunate displeasure of witnessing his first murder at the age of 5 right outside his apartment. "A guy was out there serving his narcotics," he explains, and "somebody rolled up with a shotgun and blew his chest out." Murder, Lamar realized, was "something that maybe I have to get used to."
And while music ultimately saved Lamar from a tragic life in Compton, his success has yet to make him feel completely comfortable. "You can have the platinum album, but when you still feel like you haven't quite found your place in the world — it kind of gives a crazy offset," he explains. "When you go inside these places, no matter how much money you have, no matter how much success, when you still feel like you're not comfortable, where's the feeling in that?"
Read and listen to the full interview over at NPR's website to hear how Lamar addresses himself in his music and his reflections on the people he has hurt in the past.
Watch PopCrush's Best Music Videos of 2015