Don’t Kill His Vibe: Kendrick Lamar’s Voice Might Be Controversial But It’s Helping Others


By Rachel Taylor

Kendrick Lamar just called out every rapper who’s ever spit a verse, and Twitter was imploding! OK, maybe not every rapper, but a lot of them! But guess what? He’s using his raspy voice for a legit ish, too.

But before we get to all that, let’s discuss what went down last night. Big Sean released his song “Control,” a seven-and-a-half-minute track featuring Kendrick and Jay Electronica. While the song will be left off Sean’s upcoming album Hall of Fame, Kendrick made sure his verse wouldn’t be forgotten anytime soon. He raps:

“I’m usually homeboys with the same n***** I’m rhymin’ with/ But this is hip-hop and them n***** should know what time it is/ And that goes for Jermaine Cole, Big K.R.I.T., Wale/ Pusha T, Meek Mill, A$AP Rocky, Drake/ Big Sean, Jay Electron’, Tyler, Mac Miller/ I got love for you all but I’m tryna murder you n***** / Tryna make sure your core fans never heard of you n*****/ They don’t wanna hear not one more noun or verb from you n*****.”

Remember what happens in “300” after Gerard Butler yells “This is Sparta!”? How everyone just goes crazy? That was Twitter last night. In addition to sparking the hashtag #TwitpicYourReactionAfterHearingKendricksVerse (click it: hilarious!), Kendrick got some reactions out of the rappers he put on blast. Pusha T Tweeted, “I hear u loud and clear my n*****,” and Mac Miller Tweeted, “If I can’t do no more nouns or verbs ima start comin with the wildest adjective bars that anyone has ever heard.” Kendrick has certainly made some noise in the rap game, but he doesn’t stop there. Check out where else his voice can be heard:

+ Swimming Pools

In his song “Swimming Pools (Drank),” K Dot raps about alcoholism and the peer pressure to drink. The music video chronicles Kendrick facing the forces of alcohol. As our very own Alex Govere wrote about the video, Kendrick navigates both literal and figurative pools of liquor. He is finally saved by his conscience. “I’m in your conscience, if you do not hear me,” the song says. “Then you will be history, Kendrick.”

The rapper has also spoken out against Molly. At the end of his “Bitch, Don’t Kill My Vibe” music video a  “Death to Molly” sign appears on the screen. “Sometimes you have the trends that’s not that cool,” said Kendrick about rappers mentioning Molly in their songs. If you or a friend or even relative is struggling with substance abuse, please visit Half Of Us for substance abuse help and resources.

+ Getting Schooled

Straight-A student Kendrick was the first person in his family to graduate from high school and has said, “Without education you don’t have anything in life.” Kendrick is a Get Schooled spokesman, even acting as principal for a day at a high school in Rhode Island. The rapper explained his concept of success in the video above, telling us, “It starts with what you’re doing now. Setting goals. Waking up on time. Finishing assignments. … It takes a lot to be successful, but you can do it. I come from that same place, just like you.” And the one request from MTV’s Hottest MC in the Game? Kendrick says, “Promise me that you will graduate from high school, that you will take the steps to go to college.”

+ His Charitable Heart

In 2011, Kendrick headlined a charity concert that benefitted Project RISHI (Rural India Social and Health Improvement) and Downtown Women’s Center charities in Los Angeles. Project RISHI aims to help rural Indian villages through healthcare and economic development, and the Downtown Women’s Center’s mission is to provide permanent housing and support for women fighting homelessness. K Dot also encouraged others to donate to the Red Cross to help Hurricane Sandy survivors. Kendrick was right; he’s a good kid in a M.A.A.D. City.

Don’t kill Kendrick’s vibe!  Check out the action widgets below to make sure your voice is heard, too!

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Make The Promise + Go To VMAs

Make The Promise + Go To VMAs

Make the promise to graduate high school, and Get Schooled might take you to the 2013 VMAs!!

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Get Help

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If you or a friend is worried about drinking or drug use please check out Half Of Us for resources and tips on getting help.