The Recording Academy acknowledged Kendrick Lamar‘s brilliance on his sophomore studio album To Pimp a Butterfly with 11 Grammy nominations, including Album of the Year, Song of the Year and Best Rap Performance.
“I want all of them,” said Kendrick. “Because it’s not only a statement for myself, but it’s a statement for the culture. They’re all important, because of the foundation the forefathers laid before me. Nas didn’t get a chance to be in that position. Pac. So to be acknowledged and to actually win, it’s for all of them.”
The Pharrell and Sounwave-produced “Alright” also made a huge statement this year, particularly for the Black Lives Matter movement. Lamar admits he recognized the anthem’s power when he heard the chant across the globe.
“When I’d go in certain parts of the world, and they were singing it in the streets,” he recalled. “When it’s outside of the concerts, then you know it’s a little bit more deep-rooted than just a song. It’s more than just a piece of a record. It’s something that people live by — your words.”
When asked about other rappers that caught his ear this year, Kendrick gave Future a glowing co-sign. “Of course Future killed it. He smashed,” he said. “Drake smashed. Future’s work ethic was crazy, his energy. This is the thing about hip-hop music and where people get it most misconstrued: It’s all hip-hop. You can’t say that just what I do is hip-hop, because hip-hop is all energies. James Brown can get on the track and mumble all day. But guess what: You felt his soul on those records.”
Lamar also discussed President Obama being a fan of “How Much a Dollar Cost” in the full piece here.