“To Pimp a Butterfly” initially received very mixed reviews. Some called it overwhelming and harsh. Others labeled it as on of the most innovative and refreshing rap albums in years. Neil McCormick of The Daily Telegraph called the album a "bravura masterpiece," describing it as "dense, intricate … a poetic narrative built around a long dark night of the soul." The general populous greatly enjoyed the album, as it sold over one million copies. It also reached #1 on the Billboard Top 100 albums. In addition to being successfully marketed, “To Pimp a Butterfly” won numerous awards and accolades, including the Grammy for Rap Album of the Year. He also received his second nomination for Album of the Year, but lost to Taylor Swift’s “1989.” But some critiques did not believe that “To Pimp a Butterfly” deserved such high praise. Clover Hope of The Muse claimed that the album was overwhelmingly black. Although she greatly enjoyed the album, she was left with a deeper impression she has yet to figure out. “This is a special album, and that won 't change. But I already need a break from it. I gotta get away from it. Its blackness is way too vast,” she said in her review. Others have felt similarly, claiming that his political message is overbearing at times. It’s easy to see how these critiques could make these arguments. From start to finish, “To Pimp a Butterfly” deals with struggles faced by many African Americans. In almost every song of the album, Kendrick raps about police
Working Thesis: Music, especially hip-hop, in the black community has been long considered terrible music to the white mainstream media, and while, to a degree, this can be arguably true, certain types of music have played key roles in overcoming or thriving against systemic racism especially in America.
Rap music has become one of the most distinctive and controversial music genres of the past few decades. A major part of hip hop culture, rap, discusses the experiences and standards of living of people in different situations ranging from racial stereotyping to struggle for survival in poor, violent conditions. Rap music is a vocal protest for the people oppressed by these things. Most people know that rap is not only music to dance and party to, but a significant form of expression. It is a source of information that describes the rage of people facing growing oppression, declining opportunities for advancement, changing moods on the streets, and everyday survival. Its distinct sound, images, and attitude are notorious to people of all
In this article, the speaker must be an expert in politics, ethnicity and the music industry. There is a linkage between the above fields hence the speaker must have had a superlative background on these issues. The audience targeted by this literature were seemingly music enthusiasts to be educated on understanding what Hip-Hop entails and hoped to achieve this as it was established. The subject was Hip-Hop as a music genre that was largely developed by African American men to express their plight on injustice and oppression. The principal issue was how Hip-Hop has been used as a form of resistance and need for deliverance of the African Americans.
Kendrick Lamar’s third studio album, “To Pimp a Butterfly,” sheds light on the struggle of achieving rich and fame and the trials that come with. Rolling Stone and Billboard praised the album awarding it the best album of 2015. The album depicts the difficulties of fame by putting the trials and tribulations on display; the inability for those to adjust to their new lifestyle and the potential temptations that creep in. “To Pimp a Butterfly” has been both a divisive and uniting factor in its emergence in popular culture.
Well-known American rapper and songwriter, Kendrick Lamar, in his influential performance at the 2016 Grammy Awards while singing "Blacker the Berry" off his 11 time nominated album "To Pimp a Butterfly," recounts issues of racism in society, however, conveys a deeper meaning of hypocrisy towards the end of the song. In this essay, I will be doing a contextual analysis of Kendrick Lamar 's 2016 Grammy performance. I argue the significant meaning throughout Lamar 's performance, then I go outside the event and describe events in the outside world that related or could have perhaps provoked him to decide to perform those particular songs and I’ll conclude by examining how those outside events could potentially alter our perception of the performance and the importance of knowing that information. The message Kendrick is trying to convey are very blunt and explicit throughout the entire song. “Or try to celebrate February like it’s my B-day” (Lamar 2016), shows his use of metaphorical language and imagery to portrays his frustrated attitude towards current racial views in America.
Molefi Asante is the author of It’s Bigger than Hip-Hop: The Rise of the Post Hip-Hop Generation. In this article, Asante predicts that the post-hip-hop generation will embrace social justice issues including women’s rights, gay’s rights, and the anti-war movement. To challenge these stereotypes, Asante speaks to the personification of the African-American ghetto and the need to stop glorifying black suffering. For Asante, the post-hip-hop generation no longer expects hip-hop to mobilize disenfranchised youth. Asante states, “The post-hip-hop generation shouldn’t wait for mainstream musicians to say what needs to be said…No movement is about beats and rhythms…. it must be bigger than hip-hop.” Because hip-hop is controlled by corporations, Asante says hip-hop will never be the focus of political change. Asante argues that “old white men” have dictated hip-hop, and by extension the actions of black youth, since 1991. “Allowing white executives, not from the hip-hop culture, to control and dictate the culture is tragic because the music, and ultimately the culture, as we can see today, has not only lost its edge, but its sense of rebellion and black movement- the very principles upon which it was founded.” Asante calls for the rise of “artivism,” a new social movement that uses art to improve community police relations, failing schools and the criminal justice system. Asante encourages the post-hip-hop generation to unite with Latino/Immigration Rights and Black Civil Rights
Within History, Rap has been considered the “CNN for black people”; what started as a way to express struggles in the ghettos of New York has transformed into one of the most popular genres of music in America. The popularity of rap has allowed many to have their voices heard, created new fashion trends, and even developed popular modern slang used by people throughout the world. The commercialization of rap has resulted in a significant following of the culture in America but also a large number of people who oppose the music. The culture of rap music has a substantial impact on popular culture in America, and by using an open mind and looking past the violence and language, people can better understand the meaning behind rap and the perception that follows it in America today.
Intro: Kendrick Lamar Duckworth's work is the product of his life experiences. Through his personal life and the constant pain and pleasure discussing personal struggles and triumphs, Lamar was able to rise above the expectations of failure through his music, a product of the ghetto where his heroes are the musicians who escaped. Thoughtful details about Compton childhood baby born in poverty, gang war, and the crack epidemic where there can be a different path. Lamar's music reaching out, narratives on how he didn't give up. His work demonstrates the struggles black people faced in the past as well as today in regards to racism, discrimination, and police violence.
Hip-Hop Culture and race have had a complicated relationship in the past two decades. It has been commonly referred to as “black music” and a reflection of black culture. However, recent studies done by the Mediamark Research Inc. showed that 60% of rap music buyers are white. With the emergence of white, Latino, Asian, and other rappers with diverse backgrounds on the Hip Hop scene it is important recognize the changing color of the genre and the stereotype it holds as “black music”. Black culture has also been subject to appropriation because of the popularization of Hip-hop music. However, much of the discourse on the topic confuses cultural appropriation and cultural appreciation, and states that hip-hop music is strictly for African Americans or that it doesn’t belong to anyone at all. Hip-Hop is a black art form that transcends cultural boundaries and can be appreciated through the lenses of different cultures as long as those who enjoy it acknowledge its roots. The genre’s growing number of non-black rappers is not due to the appropriation of the genre by other cultures but as an expansion of it due to it’s growing popularity across the world.
One challenge Kendrick Lamar faced was when his family was directly touched by the violence of the streets, He handled it by remaining thoughtful and safe, also he was a strong observer, even as a child. In 2015, Kendrick released his next album, To Pimp a Butterfly, including and featuring artists like Bilal, Snoop Dogg and Pharrell Williams, and others.
Ralph Ellison’s The Invisible Man is a fascinating novel about a nameless black man and his struggle to become successful and find his true identity in a predominantly white society that refuses to see him as person. Taking place in Harlem in the 1930’s, the story accurately depicts the life of a black man and the many injustices he faces nearly every day. More than eighty-seven years later, African-Americans still encounter numerous challenges similar to the ones the Invisible man experienced. Today, many hip-hop artists bring awareness to these problems through their songs. Most notably, Kendrick Lamar’s album To Pimp a Butterfly (March 15, 2015) deals with the topics of black oppression, institutionalized racism, and an American system designed to destroy African Americans. Despite genre and time differences, Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp a Butterfly and The Invisible Man are essential works of art in order to inspire, educate, empower, and promote social and political changes.
Unlike many other mainstream artists, Kendrick Lamar attaches great importance to the lyrics of his songs. Lamar’s song “DNA”, released last April, became a real breakthrough in the world of hip-hop music. In this song, Lamar reflects on various social issues faced by the modern African-American community of the USA. The song’s lyrics, as well as the music video, portrays the most common stereotypes and biases labeled to the African-American community. The central aim of the song is to sarcastically demonstrate the image of African-Americans as they are viewed by biased media. By the use of symbolical sarcasm and double meanings, Lamar underlines the acuteness of the race inequality that remains existing in the modern America.
Cultural phenomenon, rapper Kendrick Lamar has embraced a growing minority centered culture in America through his album “To Pimp A butterfly” this album conveys themes of hardship for minorities and cultural uprising. One of the singles on this album “Alright” simply tells black audiences that with faith everything will be alright. He uses the Lyrics “Alls my life I has to fight, nigga .Alls my life I...Hard times like God. Bad trips like: ‘God!’ Nazareth, I 'm fucked up..Homie you fucked up..But if God got us then we gon ' be alright” These lyrics simply tell suppressed minorities that despite hardship there is hope within our communities. . Months prior to the release of Kendrick Lamar’s “Alright” several attacks from white police officers happened in the black community. A common case in this uproar was the “Mike Brown case”. In this case a black man was shot dead after allegedly robbing a local gas station. Kendrick simply responded to these seemingly racial attacks with his album to “Pimp a Butterfly”. To pimp a butterfly simply means to use your influence to the best of its ability to make a meaningful impact. With tracks like “Alright” Kendrick Lamar does just that. The Primary themes and issues conveyed in this song are white supremacy, racism and black uprising
On February 15, 2016, Kendrick Lamar took the stage at the 2016 Grammy Awards show. Shackled in chains, he moved lethargically across the stage in a prison uniform. Words began to stream out of his mouth and I imagined the elephant that filled the room as an unapologetically black male made a statement to the world about African American oppression in the United States. Kendrick Lamar’s showcase included an intricate set that addressed social issues such as mass incarceration with song, “The Blacker the Berry”, while keeping hope towards better days with song “Alright”. The elaborate performance on February 15, 2016 would be a performance that will go down in history. An artist used his platform to discuss important issues in the United States to a diverse audience. With so much passion invested into the song, it was almost impossible to pick any other song besides “The Blacker the Berry”, as it discusses a wide range of issues within the United States, especially related to the black body.