For the sixth time in its 67 years, Los Angeles is the host of NBA All-Star Weekend, and you already know Kendrick Lamar was gonna be involved in some fashion.
After helping kick off the festivities with a performance at the NBA on TNT American Express Road Show, the good kid from Compton chopped it up with Billboard about his skills on the court, traits he shares with Kobe Bryant, the importance of music videos, and more.
Talk about the parallels between you [and Kobe Bryant] and the special dynamic in that relationship.
“I think from a far, we both have this will power of finding out how far we can max our potential in what we can do. I think once you have that curiosity, it’ll keep you challenged, it’ll keep you motivated and it’ll keep you elevated. That’s what he’s done with his career, he maxed it out to the fullest on the court. Now, he’s off the court and he’s finding a whole new love for something and he’ll continue with that concept and that same idea. I think that’s what we share the most.”
You’ve become a music video savant at this juncture of your career. At what point did the music video aspect become so crucial to your brand?
“I think from jump it’s always been crucial to me. You know, just being a kid watching BET, I’d be on the phone with Dave, you know my partner that does the videos with me and we’d be watching Missy Elliott videos back in high school and Busta Rhymes videos. They were always big inspirations.
“So by the time we got to the point where we can mass produce visuals on that level, we said to each other that, “We all in and that we’ve been waiting for this moment.” So, I think it’s something that always inspired us to do it, just being a student and always appreciating somebody being willing to put full impact and full ideas not only into the songs, but when you’re watching the songs.”