Over the past 10 years since his major label debut with good kid, m.A.A.d city, Kendrick Lamar has emerged as one of the most acclaimed artists in music, not just hip hop.
After dropping his 2015 album, To Pimp a Butterfly, Kendrick went on to be nominated for a whopping 11 Grammy Awards, making him the rapper with the most nominations in a single night, and second overall, behind Michael Jackson who has 12 nominations.
Kendrick’s nomination at the 58th Annual Grammy Awards:
- Best Rap Performance – “Alright”
- Song of the Year – “Alright”
- Best Music Video – “Alright”
- Best Rap Song – “Alright”
- Best Rap Song – “All Day” (as a writer)
- Best Rap/Sung Performance – “These Walls” (with Bilal, Anna Wise and Thundercat)
- Best Dance Recording – “Never Catch Me” (with Flying Lotus)
- Best Pop Duo/Group Performance – “Bad Blood” (with Taylor Swift)
- Best Music Video – “Bad Blood” (with Taylor Swift)
- Best Rap Album – To Pimp a Butterfly
- Album of the Year – To Pimp a Butterfly
I’m still soaking that all in,” Kendrick said to The New York Times shortly after the nominations were announced. “Michael will forever be the greatest. I’m glad it was at 11. I would never want to even think about putting myself on the same level as Michael, simply because I haven’t put in the work that he did. It couldn’t be a better number.”
“I want all of them. Because it’s not only a statement for myself, but it’s a statement for the culture. They’re all important, because of the foundation the forefathers laid before me. Nas didn’t get a chance to be in that position. Pac. So to be acknowledged and to actually win, it’s for all of them.”
Kendrick went on to win five of the 11 nominations, winning Best Rap Album but missing out on the coveted Album of the Year – that award went to Taylor Swift’s 1989. After presented with the award by the legendary Ice Cube, Kendrick went on to thank his parents Paula Oliver and Kenny Duckworth, his wife Whitney Alford, his mentor Top Dawg, as well as dedicate his win to hip hop.
“This for hip-hop,” Kendrick said proudly. “This for Snoop Dogg Doggystyle, this for Illmatic, this for Nas. We will live forever, believe that.”
To date the Compton rapper has won the third most Grammy awards in hip hop history with a total of 13, behind Kanye’s 22 and Jay-Z’s 23. On a related note, Jay-Z recently surpassed Quincy Jones to become the musician with the most Grammy nominations in history, with a record 83. Hip hop stays winning.
Kendrick Lamar: That’s the biggest accomplishment as far as the nominations: that people recognize it as an album. It’s not just a collection [of songs]. We pride ourselves on that. I wanted it to be that body of work again the same way I did with my first record. This time around, I wanted to make sure that not only were the lyrics appreciated or the beats, but the musicianship, as far as my writing skills, my arrangements. That’s me challenging myself.Kendrick Lamar on the Grammys, Black Lives Matter and His Big 2015 | The New York Times