Kendrick Lamar “The Blacker The Berry”
With Boi-1da producing, and additional production from Terrace Martin, Kendrick will make everyone forget about last night and focus on “The Blacker The Berry” today. Just wait til his first line drops. Then, the build up on all 3 verses towards the last line makes it, which stands on its own anyway, all the more powerful. The message: decolorizing violence and just calling for a halt of it altogether. Looks like Kendrick’s going to be standing up with a lot to say for his upcoming sophomore album…
In this final couplet, Kendrick Lamar employs a rhetorical move akin to—and in its way even more devastating than—Common’s move in the last line of “I Used to Love H.E.R.”: snapping an entire lyric into place with a surprise revelation of something hitherto left unspoken. In “H.E.R.”, Common reveals the identity of the song’s “her”—hip hop itself—forcing the listener to re-evaluate the entire meaning and intent of the song. Here, Kendrick Lamar reveals the nature of the enigmatic hypocrisy that the speaker has previously confessed to three times in the song without elaborating: that he grieved over the murder of Trayvon Martin when he himself has been responsible for the death of a young black man. Common’s “her” is not a woman but hip hop itself; Lamar’s “I” is not (or not only) Kendrick Lamar but his community as a whole.
Kendrick Lamar “The Blacker The Berry” new artwork: