Michael Bergeron
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Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp a Butterfly named #1 Album by Rolling Stone

Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp a Butterfly named #1 Album by Rolling Stone
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Rolling Stone just named the record To Pimp a Butterfly by Kendrick Lamar the Best Album of 2015. No small honor, Lamar’s recording beat out other Top Ten artists such as Adele (25), Drake (If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late), Blur (The Magic Whip), and even the Broadway Cast Recording of Hamilton.

Born in 1987 in Compton, California and named after Temptations co-founder Eddie Kendricks, Lamar has been performing since his teens.kl1

To Pimp a Butterfly merges Lamar’s dope hip hop sound with funk, elements of jazz and the spoken word. To Pimp includes collaborations with George Clinton, Anna Wise, and Snoop Dogg among others. Technically Lamar’s full name is Kendrick Lamar Duckworth, which is really cool because ducks are noble birds.

TPAB also marks a shift in Lamar’s commitment to social criticism in the lyrics. Lamar’s words contain legitimate concerns being addressed by someone who now possesses the popularity that demands responsibility. There’s also an explicit edge to the unity that suggests that some of the content leans with roguish abandon.kendrick

“This dick ain’t free, I need forty acres and a mule, not a forty ounce and a pitbull.”

Lamar will be headlining Day for Night, commanding the Red Stage, Sunday December 20, from 9:30 to 11 pm. Lamar’s performance will close out the two-day light and sound festival. Over the two-day event world-renowned visual artists will present art installations that share space with major recording artists on six acres that encompass three stages. The full Day for Night line-up can be found here.

— Michael Bergeron