“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 y’all, but I’m tryna murder you niggas.”
Well, alright. If you missed it last night, Big Sean liberated a track that missed the cut for his new album, Hall of Fame. Sean claims the song didn’t make the album because of sample issue clearances.
The song starts with Sean doing what he does best: dropping a couple clever bars shrouded amidst a smattering of random braggadocio. Then the fun really begins. Kendrick launches into his verse with his patented menacing flow, and after a couple bars he claims:
“I’m in a destruction mode if the gold exists. I’m important like the pope, I’m a Muslim on pork. I’m Makaveli’s offspring, I’m the king of New York.”
Hold up. What?! Did Kendrick Lamar just claim the coveted King of New York title, despite (proudly) being from Cali? I’m confused, bruh. Though I can’t agree with that claim (and yes, I caught the double-entendre with the Pac/B.I.G reference), here’s why Kendrick wins on multiple levels:
1. He single-handedly brought competition back to hip-hop.
The rap game now is pretty similar to the NBA: old-school competition is lost to a new era of cats being friendly on and off the court. Kendrick isn’t trying to have any of that. Was he effective? Lets look below:
I hear u loud and clear my nigga… @kendricklamar
— PUSHA T (@PUSHA_T) August 13, 2013
“This is Gladiator Shit”…Gotta give the people what they want .
— Big K.R.I.T. (@BIGKRIT) August 13, 2013
2. He has everybody talking.
Twitter was damn near shut down this morning. A simple Google News search will tell you how all the major media outlets are responding to it. Here, at the GURU office, we didn’t even know there was an explosion (near where many of us live) in Brooklyn, because we were all too busy talking about Kendrick.
In a time when hip-hop is stagnant at best, especially in the mainstream, it is important to get people excited and talking again. Conversation and debate are what keeps art alive. When viewed within that context, I’m pretty happy Kendrick decided to step out and hit people with this verse.
3. He gave certain rappers a new life.
It’s almost like, you should be more concerned if you weren’t mentioned on this list.
A lot of rappers are struggling to stay relevant and keep pace with the game nowadays. Ok, specifically, Pusha. This name drop from Kendrick gives a perfect launchpad for him (and others) to go a little harder and remind people they still got it.
I think Ice said it best:
I love how ONE verse woke Hip Hop the FUCK up.. It’s been a LONG time since people talked about ANYTHING someone said in their rhyme….
— ICE T (@FINALLEVEL) August 13, 2013
As both a fan and an artist, I’m excited to see what happens next. Who do you think is going to be the first rapper to respond?