Grammy Award-winning artist Kendrick Lamar plans to cap off a profitable 2017 by gracing the cover of Forbes‘ “30 Under 30” edition. Within the feature, the 30-year-old discussed how his love of rap music began, functioning under TDE, and a quote from 50 Cent that helped to shape his outlook on his career.
When asked by journalist Zach O’Malley Greenburg if he embraces the term conscious rapper that a few people have placed on him, Lamar referred back to a statement Fifty publicized to help put things into perspective.
“He said, ‘We all are conscious, whether you’re doing gangsta rap, whether you’re doing so-called conscious rap, whether you doing whatever genre you may in because you have a post, you alive and you’re telling your true feelings … these are your true thoughts and you’re conscious of them, and you’re aware of them. You are conscious, as simple as that.’ When he said that, that inspired me to not only recognize my own influence on what I have with my people,” Lamar said.
To keep in tune with his love of all things hip-hop and inspiration, Lamar stated that his beloved genre will always reign supreme.
“You can debate me on this all day you want. We say what’s cool and what’s not cool. We say what we like,” he said. “Yeah, we do that, simple as that, and it goes back to … my mom told me, I couldn’t believe when she told me this. She said 1987, the year I was born, [people were saying] hip-hop was going to last six months to a year … that tripped me out. And now you fast forward and you see Jay-Z up there, you know? [Song]writers’ Hall of Fame. This is us. This is who I am.”
Read the full feature here.