I recently saw Kendrick Lamar, the Compton hailing rapper with a serious cult following, play at The Warfield in San Francisco as part of the BET Music Matters Tour. If you think this is amusing, you’re not alone, as I apparently stood out like a sore thumb. But as Lamar so eloquently states, “uh uh, fuck that.”
As I passed through two sets of security, and waved off the $13 beers, I entered the venue doors. A sea of arm waving, head nodding, energy buzzing fans, a wall of smoke so thick it could’ve been cut with a knife, and a suffocating blanket of damp heat welcomed me to the world of Kendrick Lamar.
It was apparent by the crowd that Lamar’s fans are hardcore – They were lit up, getting down, and jumping, jamming and yelling every lyric along with their beloved 5’6″ hip hop wunderkind of only 25. Lamar took requests from the crowd letting them determine the direction of the show. He sat on a chair, having a heart-to-hearts with his fans. Pointing into the crowd, he asked, “What’s your name? Shannon? Let me ask you something Shannon. If you had a boyfriend, would you be faithful?” “Everybody, are you faithful?” and the crowd gleefully screamed, “NOOOOooo!”
Lamar continued to swoon the audience with a revised edition of The Recipe, replacing the words “L.A” with “The Bay,” to which his San Francisco/Oakland fan-base yelled wildly and appreciatively.
It’s clear Lamar is an entrancing entertainer, but the love his fan-base gives him is rightfully earned due to his talent, which is evident more than ever in his latest (October 22nd) LP, good kid, mA.A.d city via Interscope Records. The album includes a slew of guest musicians including Dr. Dre, Mary J. Blige, Drake, J Rock and more. It’s an amazing compilation of smooth beats, fresh lyrics and a little storytelling. Stream the entire album on Spotify and experience the addiction that is Kendrick Lamar.
Kendrick Lamar – Swimming Pools (Drank)
Kendrick Lamar – The Recipe (feat. Dr. Dre)