Kendrick Lamar made it on his own terms. The Top Dawg Entertainment rhymer has a platinum-selling album to his name and countless notables feature verse all spoken in his own brand of rap jargon.
Lamar paints visuals with his music, often shaded under analogies inspired by everything from history to his Compton, CA upbringing. With intellect and quick-witted rhymes making him a distinct member among hip hop's new school list of talents, the 2013 BET Hip Hop Awards is happy to welcome the West Coast rapper as one of this year's performers. Click below to see 10 essential K. Dot tracks. (Photo: Theo Wargo/Getty Images)