Kendrick Lamar is arguably one of the most political rappers in present time. And though America consumes his music, chanting “King Kunta” like we’re part of his club, how much of his conscious message are we digesting?
For one, Kendrick’s hometown of Compton is a huge influence and inspiration to the words he spits. But on top of that, it’s the mass incarceration, the struggles, and the violence that Kendrick has witnessed that add the fuel to his fire. America is oblivious—and Kendrick is pulling the curtain back.
“There’s cats out here really trying to do something… really trying to spark the idea of positivity in the community,” says Lamar in part 1 of Noisey Bompton, an 8-part documentary on Compton’s music scene. For Kendrick, telling his narrative and the narrative of the city he’s from is a way to reconcile the pain he’s been a part of. It’s a way to combat the marginalization of his community, break down the walls of gang culture, and focus on moving forward.
See part 1 of the 8 part series below.