Kendrick Lamar opens up about slaying the sophomore curse in the August/September 2014 issue of COMPLEX. More inside, plus Nicki Minaj & August Alsina's "No Love" remix...
Weeks in the making, August Alsina debuted his new single “No Love” featuring Nicki Minaj today. The duet remix puts a twist on the original anti-love song which was featured on Alsina’s debut album ‘Testimony’.
Nicki added some singing and some bars saying as she sings, “August you know, I’m here to save you, me and them girls, we ain’t the same boo, you know I hate it when you leave me”. Then raps, “You can’t treat me like you treat them , yes I am the crème de la crème, yes I am from one to ten-ten, you frontin’ in them streets keep sayin we just friends”.
Check out the full song above.
Inside Studio 2 of the LA soundlab, Kendrick Lamar is in deep thought. Will he be able to match the critical acclaim of good kid, m.A.A.d. city? How does he create another verse that ignites the social firestorm of "Control"? As he steadies his next album, Kendrick Lamar realizes that the world is watching...and expectations are high. “When I went back to my old high school, all these kids looking at me like I’m the real big homie, the same way I look at Jay Z, Nas, or Dr. Dre,” says Kendrick with a laugh, sitting in his luxury trailer at his Complex cover shoot. “You would’ve thought Michael Jackson walked through that joint off the excitement that they had.”
In the August/September 2014 issue of COMPLEX, Kendrick allow the magazine to document a studio session and opens up about fighting self-doubt, accessing his voice, figuring out how to follow-up a classic. Here are highlights:
On the pressure of the sophomore slump and following up GKMC: “If I keep focusing on, ‘I need to make something better than good kid,’ it’s going to be just that,” says Kendrick. “That’s not challenging yourself. I don’t want to become that person reflecting on what has been done. What I’m doing now is the question. I’m only as good as my last word, my last hook, my last bridge.”
On overcoming self-doubt and the advice Pharrell gave him: “I was on the tour bus going back and forth on the text with Pharrell,” says Kendrick. “I asked him, ‘You think they gon’ get it?’ And he told me, ‘Don’t ever doubt yourself again. Always be aware but don’t ever mistake your first mind, your input of where your heart is at.’”
On Macklemore and the Grammy snub: “It wasn’t really a huge deal for me,” says Kendrick, who’s known Macklemore for over a year. “Macklemore deserves the accolades. That’s still my partner regardless. He probably didn’t need to Instagram the text. But what’s done is done.”
His first big word and how he learned to expand his vocabulary: “My first-grade teacher flipped out because I wrote the word ‘audacity’ in a story,” he recalls. “I knew the word only because I heard my auntie and uncles arguing, saying, ‘You got the audacity to take my motherfucking drink and pour it out?!’ I learned all my words like that, so when I went to school it was in my head.”
On using music as his message and gift: “I got a greater purpose,” he says. “God put something in my heart to get across and that’s what I’m going to focus on, using my voice as an instrument and doing what needs to be done.” The only place to do that is back in the studio.
On creativity, making music and accessing his power: "This is truly a blessing from a higher power,” Kendrick says, “and as long as I understand that there’s really no limitations to what I can do. Everything is forward with me. When I’m in the studio I’m looking for creativity I haven’t matched yet, a feeling I haven’t felt. It’s a high. When you look at people like Jay Z, Nas, Dr. Dre, these people are established, but they love music and they love that high. You always want that feeling of creativity.”
Looks like Meek Mill will be spending the rest of his summer behind bars, while Sherri Shepherd battles it out in court with her estranged husband Lamar Sally. Sal is now suing Sherri over the surrogate contract they signed, trying to force her keep her alleged parental rights of the unborn child. Deets inside…
MMG rapper Meek Mill (real name Robert Williams) is currently behind bars for a probation violation. And recently, he filed a request for an emergency hearing in hopes of getting out of jail sooner.
Unfortunately for Meek, the judge residing over his case denied his request and he will likely be gone 'til September. So much for definitely getting out before the release of his sophomore album Dreams Worth More Than Money (which is scheduled to drop September 9th).
The 27-year-old rapper was jailed by Common Pleas Judge Genece Brinkley on July 11th for violating the terms of his probation, stemming from a 2009 drug and gun conviction. He was sentened to three to six months in jail.
Brinkley said the rapper failed to provide his probation officer with a working phone number, used his Twitter account to disparage the officer and the prosecutor assigned to the case, booked out-of-town concerts without court permission, was "combative" and "disrespectful" to probation-office staffers and posed for a picture posted on Instagram holding a gun.
Judge Brinkley reportedly denied his request due to her schedule not allowing her to preside over such a hearing until September. She also rejected a request for another judge to oversee the case. Bloop.
On Monday, Meek’s attorney plans to file another request asking a higher court to override Judge Brinkley’s decision and force her to hold an emergency hearing. Good luck with that.
Sure that's not the news Meek wanted to hear, but he did have a few visitors recently to help put a smile on his face. MMG honcho Rick Ross and crew (dressed in their #FreeMeekMill t-shirts) paid a visit to their homie last week.
And in other legal drama....
If you thought things couldn’t get any messier with former “The View” co-host Sherri Shepherd and her estranged husband Lamar Sally's divorce, you thought wrong!
Sal is now filing legal documents to prevent her from backing out of the contract they signed when they decided to have a child together via surrogate. As you may know, Sherri gave up all parental rights to the unborn surrogate baby they were supposed to share (she doesn't want her name on the birth certificate or any parts of this), but Sal isn’t letting her off the hook that easily.
According to sources, Sherri believes Sal tricked her into having a surrogate so he could benefit from child support payments. She claims he got her to sign the contract knowing then he would divorce her eventually in order to get paid.
Sal is now ready to duke it out in court to have Sherri’s name on the unborn baby’s birth certificate. We told you Sal filed for divorce first in California, while Sherri filed in New Jersey. She likely filed in NJ because the state does not recognize surrogacy agreements, unlike California.
Dude seems to be trying his damnedst for a come-up…
1. Supermodel Naomi Campbell settles (for an undisclosed amount) with an Italian photographer for allegedly attacking him back in 2009. STORY
In today's video roundup, RHOA star Kenya Moore falls onstage (but recovers fabulously) while Estelle releases a visual for "Conqueror" and Future debuts "T-Shirts."
You can't keep a good Queen down...or a "Housewife". Over the weekend, RHOA star Kenya Moore joined a few other Bravo Housewives (Kyle Richards, Melissa Gorga, Vicki Gunvalson, Jill Zarin), at a Caesars Palace event where they were paired with a few high rollers for a competition.
During one of the events (runway walk) the former Miss USA took a spill, but she cleaned it up and came back with a twirl (of course). While some may remember the fall, no one will forget the comeback.
Watch the fall and the twirl-up here:
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Grammy-winning singer Estelle is back with an inspirational video for “Conqueror,” the lead single off her upcoming album True Romance (November 4th) album.
She described the concept of True Romance to Rap-Up saying it will cover four themes—passion, courage, true romance, and the bullshit.
“Every song fits into one of these themes. This is a real body of work, just like when you do an art piece, or when you have all these awesome images on your Instagram. You want people to see the full you.”
Are you ready for True Romance?
Future is back with another video from his HONEST disc. "T-Shirts", directed by Cricket, shows a day-in-the-life of Future hanging out in Atlanta. We see him hopping off a plane, visiting a shoe store, hanging out with fans, and performing a show. Watch out for a cameo for Mike WiLL Made-It.