Kendrick Lamar is often considered the saviour of the new school. Among a generation of mumble rappers, Lamar has been consistent in releasing seriously good quality hip hop. Since his emergence on the Compton underground hip hop scene in the late early 2010s, Lamar has gone on to work with all the greats in the business and is known as a skilled lyricist.
Coming up in Compton under the independent record label Top Dawg Entertainment, Lamar first garnered attention with his 2010 debut mixtape release Overly Dedicated. In 2011, Lamar released his first full-length studio album, Section 80, which caught the attention of Compton native Dr Dre, and already with a cult following, the rapper landed a record deal with Dr. Dre’s Aftermath Entertainment.
Upon signing to Aftermath, Lamar began work on his first major-label album Good Kid, M.A.A.D City, which upon its release in 2012, received critical acclaim and positive reviews making Lamar the next big artist. Now with a lot of pressure on him to produce a good third album, Lamar took three years out of the game to work on his craft and music, which culminated in his 2015 release To Pimp A Butterfly. The album was Lamar’s first to reach number one on the Billboard Top 200 and is certified platinum.
Lamar continued to follow suit with his albums on somewhat of a streak. The Compton rapper’s 2017 album Damn earned him his first number-one single on the US Billboard Hot 100, in the form of ‘Humble’ and even saw Lamar win the Pulitzer Prize for Music.
Having been prominent in hip hop culture for exactly ten years, now is the perfect time to look back on all of Lamar’s projects, the good, the bad and the great, to break down and figure out exactly how many records the songwriter and rapper has sold.
Kendrick Lamar’s best-selling album:
DAMN. is Lamar’s best-selling album. The record sold 603,000 units in its first week, going straight to number one. Furthermore, after just one week of availability on streaming platforms, the album racked up 340 million streams. Furthermore, after three weeks, it had moved 1.014 million units. The album’s lead single ‘Humble’ has been streamed over 1 billion times on Spotify, and the album is triple-platinum.
Highly decorated, the album received a Grammy for ‘Best Rap Album’, a BET award for ‘Album Of The Year’ and eventually went on to win the Pulitzer Prize for Music.
Kendrick Lamar’s worst-selling album:
Lamar’s worst-selling album is his 2011 debut album Section.80. Peaking at 113 on the Billboard Top 200 it didn’t even enter the ‘top 100’ bracket. Released before Lamar was on a major label, the album was released by Top Dawg Entertainment.
Section.80 moved 5,000 units in its first week, and even in 2022 is still certified gold making it Lamar’s only album not to receive platinum certification.
Kendrick Lamar’s total album sales:
Kendrick Lamar cut through the noise of mumble rap and meme rappers because he made real music with actual meaning. One of the most highly decorated rappers from the 2010 era now, the pressing question is how many albums has Lamar sold in total from his first ever record until now.
It would be impossible to get data from every single country on earth. However, assessing Lamar’s sales in the UK, US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand combined, Kendrick Lamar has sold 9.5 million albums.