In spite of being in the midst of his DAMN tour, Kendrick Lamar has also been moving full-steam ahead with his press run. This time around the Compton native delved deep with Rolling Stone as the cover star for their 50th anniversary issue.
Dubbed by the magazine as the "Best Rapper Alive," K. Dot spoke at length with sheer confidence about his ubiquitous single "HUMBLE," refusing to speak on Donald Trump, and the validity of rappers with ghostwriters. But another notable segment of his in-depth interview was the mention of one of his rap counterparts: Drake.
Writer Brian Hiatt took a stab at getting Kendrick to name his favorite Drake song, and the inquiry received a laugh. "Favorite Drake song [chuckles]. I got a lot of favorite Drake songs. Can't name one off the back.... He has plenty," was the rapper's reply.
Over the past few years, the hip-hop titans have engaged in a cold war of sorts, as each have attempted to outwit the other. While many fans would assume the dust has settled since Kendrick threw subs on his single "The Heart Part 4," that seems to be far from the case. When addressing the elephant in the room of hip-hop ghostwriting, Kung Fu Kenny held no punches. "I cannot call myself the best rapper if I have a ghostwriter," he said candidly.
"If you're saying you're a different type of artist and you don't really care about the art form of being the best rapper, then so be it. Make great music. But the title, it won't be there."
K. Dot also didn't bite his tongue when it came to addressing his ascension into the pop music sphere, subtly implying that not everyone is capable of staying true to the nature of hip-hop while also dabbling in other markets. "You can have that one big record, but you can still have that integrity at the same time," he said.
"Not many can do it … wink-wink [laughs]. Still have them raps going crazy on that album and have a number-one record, wink-wink. Call it whatever you want to call it. As long as the artist remains true to the craft of hip-hop and the culture of it, it is what it is."
While Kendrick's candor has yet to provoke a response from Drake, it'd be interesting to see the two emcees spar on wax. In the meantime, check out K. Dot's Rolling Stone cover below. The issue is due on stands August 24.
Kendrick Lamar appears on our latest cover. You can read the story in full at RollingStone.com. The rapper discusses his vices, working with Beyoncé on ‘Lemonade,’ his latest album ‘Damn.,’ the future and more. “You can talk about dreams all day and ‘what I want,’” he says, “but you gotta put an action behind it.” Photograph by Mark Seliger (@markseliger)
(Photos from Left: Emma McIntyre/Getty Images for Coachella, Ethan Miller/WireImage)