January 15, 2016


Compton Giving Kendrick Lamar the Key to the City

Christopher Polk/BET/Getty Images for BET
Christopher Polk/BET/Getty Images for BET

Kendrick Lamar has enough honors now to fill a house. Every 2015 best-of list had him at the top. He kicked it with President Barack Obama in the Oval Office. The California State Senate hit him with the Generational Icon Award. He was the Grand Marshall for the 63rd Compton Christmas Parade. David Bowie openly took cues from To Pimp a Butterfly for his final album, Blackstar.

Next up: The key to the city of Compton, heading his way Saturday, Feb. 13. Here's the exchange between K.Dot and Aja Brown, the city's mayor:

"The 28-year-old rapper was born in Compton and attended Centennial High School, where he was a straight-A student," writes Rolling Stone. "When he was eight, he watched Tupac Shakur and Dr. Dre film the music video for 'California Love,' which later proved a pivotal moment for his future rap career."

The official statement from Mayor Brown reads:

"Kendrick Lamar is a phenomenal artist whose work has served as a catalyst to raise a new level of consciousness for this generation. His message challenges the status quo and motivates listeners to rethink our society's institutions. I believe Kendrick Lamar is not only an artist, but an influencer of an entire generation. He represents Compton with great pride and I am honored to present him with the Key to the City, which symbolizes our deep appreciation for his philanthropic work and commitment to our community. Mr. Lamar's achievements further Compton's legacy of ingenuity and excellence.  Kendrick Lamar represents Compton's evolution, embodying the New Vision for Compton--Purpose, Prosperity and Progress."

Compton city council member Janna Zurita adds that Kendrick is "one of Compton's greatest ambassadors...because he is a symbol of what our city really is—a place where dreams can come true."