With so many interviews sounding the same and generic, the folk at Interview magazine give us Hip Hops current lyrical torch holder Kendrick Lamar getting the questions asked of him from R&B soul icon Erykah Badu. I personally find it to be oh so refreshing when artists interact with each other vs the usual media. Below are is snippet of the conversation. Full Interview link follows.
BADU: What are you trying to achieve as a musician, if anything at all?
LAMAR: Well, like I was saying, as a kid I was always fascinated knowing that I could be the best at something—like Jay-Z or Nas or B.I.G. But putting a positive light on where I come from is also important to me. When you think of Compton, it’s numb with negativity, even to this day. So the whole purpose of this first album was really to spark the idea of doing something different rather than doing a record that’s just about gang culture. That’s the ultimate thing I want to do in making music—to be able to inspire somebody else.
BADU: Speaking of Compton, tell me about how you grew up. You said that you come from a big family.
LAMAR: My mom’s got 14 brothers and sisters, my pop’s got 10. They started in Chicago and came to L.A. . . .Well, they actually came to Compton—just them two—in ’84, and then they had me in ’87. But they paved the way for all my uncles and aunties and my cousins—eventually everybody came out. At one particular time, in the early ’90s, we all stayed in the two black neighborhoods in Compton. So it was one of them things where it was like we were the neighborhood. So, as a kid, I was watching all of these things going on—parties, drinking, smoking, violence. But I was totally oblivious to it because I felt like it was just life. At the same time, I had birthdays and Christmas and holidays, which allowed me to actually be a kid. It gave me the ability to be a dreamer. That’s what separated me from all my homeboys—the fact that I didn’t get caught inside the reality. I was always dreaming about doing something else or going somewhere else.