‘Good Kid’: Kendrick Lamar’s attempt to escape Compton
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'Good Kid': Kendrick Lamar’s attempt to escape Compton

Kendrick Lamar’s status is as one of contemporary hip-hop’s best lyricists. The West Coast native has been a star since his 2011 debut album Section.80 and has continued to tell powerful stories with his music. Unlike many of his peers, Lamar tells tales of hardship and struggle and avoids materialism, consumerism and meaningless drug-rap.

One of Lamar’s first impressions upon the public was in 2012 with his major label debut, Good Kid, m.A.A.d City. Released through Dr Dre’s Aftermath Entertainment, the project sent shockwaves through the industry and saw contributions from the likes of Jay Rock, Pharrell Williams, Drake and Hit-Boy. 

However, despite the body of work being flawless from start to finish, one track in particular has always stood out to fans. ‘Good Kid’, seventh on the project’s tracklist. The song tells a detailed story of Lamar’s life before fame and is extremely powerful.

‘Good Kid’ details Lamar’s struggles growing up in the crime-ridden area of Compton. The neighbourhood is known as the home of gang culture in the US. On the track, the West Coast icon explains the role of a kid trying to escape the influence of his surroundings.

It chronicles the predicament of a youngster who is desperately attempting not to get drawn into the nastiness and, ultimately, the situation he was once in as the ‘Good Kid’ desperately trying to remain respectable and godly.

In an interview with HipHopDX, Lamar explained the album details, “The kid that’s trying to escape that influence, trying his best to escape that influence, [but] has always been pulled back in because of circumstances that be.”

The Pharrell-produced track has a distinct place in Lamar’s discography as it is the track that provides the lens through which the entire album is seen through. You can listen too ‘Good Kid’ in the video below.