How many times can rap’s vanguard pass the torch to Kendrick Lamar? In 2011, Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre and Game crowned him the new king of the West at an L.A. concert. But after his 2012 album, good kid, m.A.A.d. city, went gold and blew away fans and critics, the accolades are still coming. Last week, MTV put the Compton rapper at the top of their annual "Hottest MCs in the Game" list. This week, Kendrick got the ultimate co-sign when Jay-Z guested on a remix to "B—ch Don’t Kill My Vibe," a standout track from good kid. On Monday, Kendrick dialed up Hot 97’s Funkmaster Flex to discuss his recent winning streak, the remix with Hov and Kanye West’s recent rant about MTV’s list.
Kendrick told Flex that the remix came about when he found out through Jay-Z's longtime friend Tyran "Ty Ty" Smith that the legendary rapper was a fan of his album. After Kendrick tracked down Hov and asked him to appear on the remix, Jay dropped his verse and sent it back to Kendrick so he could add his own bars. Kendrick says he knew he had to come correct when he heard Jay’s verse. "When I heard that thing he sent back I said to myself, 'I can't be no floozy on this mother---er for sure'," he said. "All them years of being in the studio, all them years of writing, all them years of free-styling and just being a student of the game don't mean sh-- if I can't live up to this track, at least by a little bit being beside a legend in it."
"I was so excited it took me a day,” Kendrick added, referring to writing and recording his own new verse. "Jay-Z came and just humbled the whole record, so you just gotta go for what you know."
You gotta give it up to Kendrick for staying humble — especially when MTV recently crowned him rap’s Hottest MC. Kanye West, however, isn’t exactly known for keeping his ego, and he recently broke his press embargo to complain about MTV’s list. Naturally he felt he himself should’ve been higher (MTV listed him at No. 7), but he also said that he thought Lil Wayne should’ve topped the list. Some took the comment as a snub to Kendrick, but he certainly didn’t, he told Flex.
"I didn’t take it as nothing. That’s his opinion," he said. "This is hip hop, you supposed to have some type of compassion about it."
Look for Kendrick to keep his momentum going at this year’s first annual BET Experience, where he’ll perform along with Beyoncé, ScHoolboy Q and others.
Get ready for the BET Experience, featuring Beyoncé, Snoop Dogg, R. Kelly, Erykah Badu, Kendrick Lamar and many more. Go here for more details and info on how to buy tickets.
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(Photo: Michael Buckner/Getty Images)
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