At 30 years old, Kendrick Lamar is still writing his own legacy and there's a possibility we still haven't even seen the peak of his career, but he's already made a significant impact on hip-hop culture and will be remembered as a legend. It was announced Thursday that a biography about the Compton rapper is already in the works.
Bandcamp Senior Editor and Pitchfork contributor Marcus J. Moore has signed a deal with Touchstone Books to pen a cultural biography called The Butterfly Effect: How Kendrick Lamar Ignited the Soul of Black America.
Moore told P&P about the concept behind the book over email: "My book details the artist's coming of age as an MC, how he helped resurrect two languishing genres (bebop and jazz), his profound impact on a racially fraught America, and his emergence as the bonafide King of Rap."
"It centers on three albums—good kid, m.A.A.d city, To Pimp a Butterfly, and DAMN.— and examines how Lamar charted a personal and societal awakening in America," Moore continues. "It details how his story directly connects to the charged spirits of art and revolution. Ultimately, the biography explores the broad global impact of Mr. Lamar and his work."
Moore is working with people from Lamar's past to paint an accurate and detailed picture of his cultural impact. He explains, "Kendrick's team is aware of my intention to write this book. I have interviews in place with people in and around the environment in which he grew up, as well as those who've helped him create music along the way."
After writing about Lamar for various publications over the years (read his review of DAMN. here), Moore is taking the opportunity to dig deep into the man behind the music.
"Having covered Lamar's music over the years, I'm always fascinated by the sheer gravity of his work," Moore says. "He's an iconic musician, and someone who truly appreciates the foundation of black art, using it as a vehicle to shed light on his community. He's never forgotten where he's come from and I think that's honorable. He's also a conflicted soul who's always looking to improve, and is never satisfied with the status quo. He shapes culture and music in a way no other lyricist has. As a a big fan of his work, I want to shed adequate light on the man behind the music while giving proper context to his art."