Kendrick Lamar is returning to Saturday Night Live after a bit of a hiatus.
Kendrick first served as a musical guest in 2013 when Adam Levine hosted. He performed his late-night staple “Swimming Pools” (Drank) and the Janet Jackson-sampling “Poetic Justice.” The following year, K. Dot delivered an SNL performance for the ages, giving a scorching rendition of “i” and joining forces with Jay Rock for “Pay for It.” He appeared as a cameo in 2014 for Imagine Dragons’ “Radioactive” performance, and later in 2018 during Anderson .Paak’s “Tints.”
On tonight’s SNL, Kendrick performed “Rich Spirit,” utilizing the lighting and shadow effects from his shows. He then went into “N95.” Notably, he displays “the homie Jason Keaton wrote two books in prison. The Edges Envy in the Eyes. Yea we still playing industry politics.”
For his second song, he performed “Father Time” with Sampha.
Although SNL didn’t get Kendrick debuting new music, he did perform several “Untitled” tracks during a late-night performance run. It was his way of introducing established fans to his music music while the uninitiated got a taste of him with a powerful performance.
Kendrick is on a break from the Big Steppers Tour before it heads to Europe on Oct. 7 before wrapping on Dec. 17 in New Zealand.