Happy 28th Birthday Kendrick Lamar: 28 Top Lines From Kendrick Lamar

Originally published at freethrows.net on June 17, 2015.

As, daytime talk show icon, Ellen Degeneres, regarded, “[Kendrick Lamar is] the greatest rapper of his generation, but he is so much more than that.”

His musical contributions transcend the time. Kendrick Lamar transcends his peers. Being at the top of a generation does not do his artistry justice.

Nor do the 28 following lines. However, with this commendatory post, all I’m trying to say is, “Thank you and happy birthday.”

(All lines come directly from genius.com)

“The hardest thing for me to do
 Is to get you, to know me, within sixteen bars” — from Average Joe

“So won’t you bear witness while I bare feet
 So you can walk in my shoes and get to know me”
-from Poe Mans Dreams (His Vice)

“From Compton to Congress, set trippin’ all around
 Ain’t nothin’ new, but a flu of new Demo-Crips and Re-Blood-licans
 Red state versus a blue state, which one you governin’?”
-from Hood Politics

“I mean your life is full of turmoil
 Spoiled by fantasies of who you are, I feel bad for you” -from Momma

“love is not just a verb” -from Poetic Justice

“I’m a loser, I’m a winner
 I’m good, I’m bad, I’m a Christian, I’m a sinner
 I’m humble, I’m loud, I’m righteous, I’m a killer
 What I’m doing, I’m saying that I’m human” -from Kush & Corinthians (His Pain)

“And if they take everything, know I got Compton” -from Compton

“I don’t see Compton, I see something much worse
 The land of the landmines, the hell that’s on earth”
-from Complexion (A Zulu Love)”

“Bumping ‘Brenda’s Got a Baby’ while a pervert yelling at her” -from Keisha’s Story (Her Pain)

“My little sister eleven, I looked her right in the face
 The day that I wrote this song, set her down and pressed play”
-from Keisha’s Song (Her Pain)

“What’s crazy was, I was hearin about it
 But doubted your ignorance how could you ever just put her on blast and shit
 Judging her past and shit, well it’s completely my future
 Her nigga behind me right now asking for ass and shit”
-from Sing About Me

“And your sister’s situation was the one that pulled me
 In a direction to speak of something that’s realer than the TV screen”
-from Sing About Me

“Wicked as 80 reverends in a pool of fire with devils holding hands
 From the distance, don’t know which one is a Christian… damn”
-from Hol’ Up

“Oh America, you bad bitch, I picked cotton that made you rich
 Now my dick ain’t free” -from For Free? (Interlude)

“I used to want to see the penitentiary way after elementary
 Thought it was cool to look the judge in the face when he sentenced me

 Since my uncles was institutionalized
 My intuition has said I was suited for family ties”
-from Poe Mans Dreams (His Vice)

“my niggas think I’m a god
 Truthfully all of ’em spoiled”
-from Institutionalized

“The reason why I know you very well
 Cause we have the same eyes, can’t you tell?”
-from Real

“But what love got to do with it when you don’t love yourself?” -from Real

“Park the car then we start rhyming, ya bish
 The only thing we had to free our mind

 Then freeze that verse when we see dollar signs” -from Money Trees

“They want me unemployed, until I hit the streets
 Fulfilling voids of broke D-Boys selling weed”
-from Barbed Wire

“So I’mma say somethin’ that’s vital and critical for survival
 Of mankind, if he lyin’, color should never rival
 Beauty is what you make it, I used to be so mistaken
 By different shades of faces”
-from Complexion (A Zulu Love)

“if you knew me
 You’ll know I always had a passion for riddle when writing
 But lately I’ve been thinking ’bout taking chances to brighten
 My future financially, so please don’t be mad at me

 I gotta do what I gotta do” -from ROTC (Interlude)

“Money is power, yours is ours” -from Dying of Thirst

“making excuse that your relief
 Is in the bottom of the bottle and the greenest indo leaf”
-from Swimming Pools (Drank)

“I’ve been dealing with depression ever since an adolescent
 Duckin’ every other blessin’, I can never see the message” -from i

“‘…Lucy got paper work on top of paper work
 I want you to know that Lucy got you
 All your life I watched you
 And now you all grown up to sign this contract if that’s possible’” -from For Sale? (Interlude)

“See I’ve spent twenty three years on the earth searching for answers
 ’til one day I realized I had to come up with my own”
-from Ab-Soul’s Outro

“I’m not the next pop star, I’m not the next socially aware rapper
 I am a human mothafuckin’ being, over dope ass instrumentation” -from Ab-Soul’s Outro

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