Kendrick Lamar - "i"

In late September, Kendrick Lamar released the first single likely to appear on his upcoming album. The track, titled ‘i’has sparked quite a bit of attention among his fans, considering it’s the first clue as to what his next album might sound like and what fans it might resonate with. His last album, Good Kid, M.A.A.D City, became an instant classic, as it was a true depiction of an all-too-common tainted youth in the famous Southern California city of Compton. The album as a whole told Kendrick’s story, each song artistically crafted to perfection.

It’s no surprise that his latest single sounds independent of his last album, taking into account the fact that he’s now in a very different place in his life: a multimillionaire. Yet, the song doesn’t give off the egotistical vibe that rappers often lean towards after making it big. Instead, Kendrick is trying to stay away from the idea that money makes you a better person. ‘i’ attempts at sending the obvious and simple message that loving yourself is the key to living life. It’s refreshing to see that someone as influential as Lamar isn’t focusing on the materialistic lifestyle he could be living. In fact, at a net worth of over $10 million, Kendrick recently bought his first house at a relatively modest price of about $500,000.

Although ‘i’ doesn’t have the dark edge of tracks off of Good Kid, M.A.A.D City, Kendrick’s head seems to be in the right place. My prediction is that his upcoming album, scheduled to come out in late 2014, will sound more like his debut albumSection 80. Whatever it may sound like, I trust that it’ll be another genuine work of art.