Right now it’s hard to find a more happening rapper that Kendrick Lamar from Compton, California. Early this year MTV named him “the hottest MC in the game” and his live shows are described as intense. He has so far released five mixtapes and two official albums. The newer of the latter, good kid, m.A.A.d city (2012), rose straight to nr. 2 on the album chart. Kendrick is also part of the group Black Hippy with Jay Rock, Schoolboy Q and Ab-Soul.
Seeing his idols Tupac Shakur and Dr. Dre filming the video for their hit California Love was a blood stopping experience for the then 8 year old Kendrick, who also mentions Nas, Jay-Z and Eminem as his inspirations. When he was 16, he released his first mixtape Youngest Head Nigga In Charge as K-Dot. It stirred so much interest that Top Dawg Entertainment signed the wordy teenager right away. Kendrick has since released four other mixtapes, all in download format. The official debut album Section.80 came out in 2011. Both of his albums have been praised especially for the honest and open-minded way they portray both Kendrick’s personal experiences and life in Compton generally. The beats behind the raps are subtly atmospheric and mostly electronic.