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RAPSODY EXPLAINS HOW HER FEATURE ON TO PIMP A BUTTERFLY CAME ABOUT

Kendrick Lamar surprised the masses with the release of To Pimp A Butterfly but many were also pleasantly surprised with the appearance of Rapsody on the song “Complexion.” Her stellar verse added much needed depth to the song that discusses colorism and Complex caught up with Rapsody to discuss how the collaboration came about.

When did Kendrick first reach out to you?
Initially, when he and 9th [Wonder] talked about it was the day after the “Control” verse dropped. I was in New York for the She Got Game listening, which you came to. And after that, I went to Premier’s studio to shoot a video. So 9th was talking to Kendrick about the “Control” verse and he hit him and was like, “Yo, I have an idea for my next album. I want to reach out to Rapsody for it.” So 9th was like, “That’d be great or whatever. Just let us know.”

You know, time goes by. He’s been touring. I didn’t think too much of it. Working with one of those artists, you have different ideas when making music. But, he reached back out on Jan. 11 [of 2015]. I was on my way to Toronto, and he hit 9th. He told him he was gonna send him something to get on. That was when he reached out.

Did he send you a skeleton of the song?
I didn’t hear his verse. He sent me the part that I rapped on, so from the part where the beat switches? That’s all I got. I called him and he told me the song is “Complexion.” That was pretty much it. We didn’t talk in-depth about what direction to go in, but he told me complexion. You know, African-American, black people in America. I knew kind of the thought process behind it. I was in D.C. and I wrote that verse that day. 9th drove up, and we went into the studio and recorded it that night.

I was telling 9th, this is my first time hearing the song in its entirety. When I heard the song all together, I told 9th, “Wow that’s crazy.” I hadn’t heard his verse, and it is dope that we had similar subject matter about slaves and about blue eyes. And the 2Pac thing. I didn’t know 2Pac was at the end of the project. So it is dope how it all came together.

What would you say is the message of “Complexion”?
Basically, [it’s] the whole idea of colorism and how much of a problem it’s in the black community. Light skin versus dark skin. It goes all the way back to slavery where you had the dark skin blacks. You know, they were called the field niggas. They were working in the field. And then you had the house niggas who were the light skin ones. Having that separation, it created the vibe, which we still see today and it still affects us. The dark skin would think, you know, “Oh, the light skin think they’re better being in the house.” And vice-versa. That’s just what it is all about. That’s the beauty of all humans. We all come in different shapes, colors, and sizes. But the way we look on the outside, our color doesn’t make anyone better than the next. We are all beautiful in our own right. So it is just appreciating the variety within the black community. Whether you are red bone or black as chocolate, you are beautiful and embrace that.

You can read the rest here.

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KENDRICK LAMAR – TO PIMP A BUTTERFLY (FULL ALBUM STREAM)

A week ahead of its release, Kendrick Lamar’s major label follow up to good kid, m.A.A.d city drops in the form of To Pimp A Butterfly and you can stream it in its entirety now. Apparently, there was some sort of issue that led to the album’s surprise digital release as outlined in the tweet below by TDE CEO Anthony “Top Dawg” Tiffith.

After being available while most people were still asleep, the album was suddenly unavailable come Monday morning. What exactly happened has yet to be explained but you can stream the album in its entirety on Spotify now. With features from the likes of Bilal, Anna Wise of Sonnymoon, Snoop Dogg, George Clinton, James Fauntleroy, Rapsody, Ronald Isley, Thundercat, Terrace Martin, Flying Lotus and more, you’ll immediately notice that the album has a very distinct vibe. Extraordinarily funky and with a prideful element that takes you back to the 70s, To Pimp A Butterfly was applauded across social media. But how good is it? Judge for yourself.

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KENDRICK LAMAR – TO PIMP A BUTTERFLY (OFFICIAL TRACKLIST)

After several fake tracklistings for Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp A Butterfly hit the web, it appears that we finally have the right one courtesy of DJ Booth.

With DJ Booth being a digital distributor of music, it make sense that their tracklisting would be legit. The explanation below helps as well.

The album is currently slated to drop on March 23, and in an effort to prevent the album leaking ahead of that date, Universal Music Group has sent out the tracklisting to what appears to be several music upload services. For example, if YouTube knows the album’s song titles, it can better flag anyone attempting to upload a file with that title.

Kendrick Lamar – To Pimp A Butterfly Tracklist

Wesley’s Theory
For Free? (Interlude)
King Kunta
Institutionalized
These Walls
U
Alright
For Sale? (Interlude)
Momma
Hood Politics
How Much A Dollar Cost
Complexion
The Blacker The Berry
You Ain’t Gotta Lie (Momma Said)
I
Mortal Man

The album drops on March 23 and you can pre-order here.

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STRAIGHT OUTTA COMPTON RED BAND TRAILER

It’s hard to believe that it has been a quarter century since N.W.A. changed the landscape of music forever. On August 14, the film about the collective will finally hit theaters and here is the red band trailer with an intro from Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, Kendrick Lamar and Game.

In the mid-1980s, the streets of Compton, California, were some of the most dangerous in the country. When five young men translated their experiences growing up into brutally honest music that rebelled against abusive authority, they gave an explosive voice to a silenced generation. Following the meteoric rise and fall of N.W.A., Straight Outta Compton tells the astonishing story of how these youngsters revolutionized music and pop culture forever the moment they told the world the truth about life in the hood and ignited a cultural war.

Starring O’Shea Jackson Jr., Corey Hawkins and Jason Mitchell as Ice Cube, Dr. Dre and Eazy-E, Straight Outta Compton is directed by F. Gary Gray (Friday, Set It Off, The Italian Job). The drama is produced by original N.W.A. members Ice Cube and Dr. Dre, who are joined by fellow producers Matt Alvarez and Tomica Woods-Wright. Will Packer serves as executive producer of the film alongside Gray.

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KENDRICK LAMAR TALKS PROTESTS, POLICE BRUTALITY AND HIS SINGLE I

In the wake of the turmoil that has swept the nation and resulted in protests across the country, Kendrick Lamar sat down with MTV at a recent Reebok event to explain the significance his single “i” as well as how it relates to the deaths of Eric Garner, Michael Brown and a litany of other black men across the country.

“It’s something that I’ve been around since the beginning of time. I remember coming up in the city of Compton and [seeing] these same types of ordeals. So when I make a record like “i”, this is not just about me. It’s about what’s going on in real life, actual [facts].

My father definitely talked to me about that early on—he came from Chicago to Compton, and he dealt with it his whole life. He knew the moment I was born [that] the color of my skin was gonna be put to the test, and that’s just how it is. We have legacy, people who’ve died for it, but [there’s] still that type of negativity out there.

He told me, ‘Every day, carry yourself with some integrity and don’t let them see you sweat.’”