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Kendrick Lamar Is California Dreamin’ on Complex Digital Cover

Complex

To celebrate the release of Kendrick Lamar‘s new album ‘good kid, M.A.A.d city,’ Complex magazine featured the Compton rapper on their digital issue. The animated cover shows K-Dot wearing headphones and nodding his head to some cool music most likely from his own album.

In the interview, Lamar talks about the musical inspiration behind ‘good kid, m.A.A.d city.’ The 25-year-old rapper describes the album as a listener’s tour guide about his Compton, Calif. neighborhood. “You go to certain suburban neighborhoods in L.A. and mention that you’re from Compton [and] people will want to hide everything they have on them, get away from you thinking you’re going to rob them,” he tells the magazine. “It’s funny; it doesn’t piss me off. The reputation is real. Just like with any other ghetto in the world.”

“People think Compton is all about colors. It’s deeper than colors,” he adds. “You might think that’s a Blood neighborhood, everyone must wear red, I gotta wear red. No. Nowadays, people wear whatever they want to wear, especially the kids.”

Lamar also discusses his family upbringing in Compton. While his mother and father did run a strict household, they didn’t shelter K-Dot from exploring the street life. “My folks, they werenʼt the type to hug and kiss in front of me. They looked more like best friends than husband and wife,” he says. “They werenʼt overprotective. They let me go. When I say go, I mean go. Because they knew that I was gonna do it anyway. So whatever it was, they let me do it because they understood that. But one particular time, I tried to come back [home] and they werenʼt f—ing with me.”

Now a lot wiser, Lamar sees it as his duty to motivate this generation to become thinkers and not followers. The ‘Swimming Pools’ rapper hopes that ‘good kid, m.A.A.d city’ will help answer questions about who he is and how he’s perceived.

“My music is for the world, not just for Compton, or myself,” he says. “My fans look at me as a leader because I represent myself as a leader.”

Next: Listen to the Kendrick Lamar's 'Swimming Pools (Black Hippy Remix)'

Watch Kendrick Lamar Talks about Cartoons and Cereals

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