Kendrick Lamar better make room in his Grammy case: The award-winning lyricist etched his name into the history books on Monday by becoming the first rapper ever to win a Pulitzer Prize for music.
The 30-year-old won for his album “Damn,” which was released last April to much fanfare.
His emotional and politically charged lyrics made the record a hit among music experts and hip-hop enthusiasts, with many praising Lamar for his “self-expression.”
“I don’t want anybody to classify my music,” Lamar explained while speaking to comedian Dave Chappelle last year during a sit-down for Interview magazine.
“I want them to say, ‘This is somebody who’s recognizing his true feelings, his true emotions, ideas, thoughts, opinions, and views on the world, all on one record.’ I want people to recognize that and to take it and apply it to their own lives.
“The more and more I get out and talk to different people, I realize they appreciate that — me being unapologetic in whatever views and approach I have,” Lamar added.
The rapper’s win on Monday makes him the first non-classical or jazz artist to win the award.
While the Pulitzer board has handed out awards to musicians in the past — such as Bob Dylan, Hank Williams and Duke Ellington — they’ve never given one to a hip-hop artist.
Lamar has been lauded for combining his rap lyrics with spats of spoken word, jazz, poetry, soul and funk.
The Compton, Calif., native speaks about a wide range of issues on his albums, including police brutality and being black. He has won 7 Grammy Awards and has been nominated for 29.
Lamar nabbed best rap album in 2017, but was beaten out by Bruno Mars’ “24K Magic” for album of the year. Twitter users were quick to point this out Monday following the announcement of his Pulitzer win.
“Can’t believe that Kendrick Lamar’s DAMN. won a Pulitzer Prize while Bruno Mars’ 24K Magic, which the Grammys proved was better, did not,” joked Guy Lodge.
BuzzFeed’s Elamin Abdelmahmoud wrote, “Kendrick Lamar won a Pulitzer before winning a Grammy for album of the year, that’s some s–t.
“AND HE’S PUT OUT FOUR ALBUMS OF THE YEAR,” he added.
SOURCE: Page Six – Chris Perez