West coast emcee Kendrick Lamar's verse on Big Sean's "Control" record turned the hip hop community out this summer as lyricists from all over the country (pretty much everybody EXCEPT those who were namechecked) took up the challenge and answered back about who's the best MC. Though Kendrick shot numerous lyrical daggers, it was the phrase "King of New York" that really seemed to piss off other MCs.
During a recent interview with “Big Boy’s Neighborhood” on Power 106, Kendrick responded to all the drama, for the first time, and broke down the metaphorical meaning of the phrase.
He told Big Boy, "Honestly I didn’t know there would be so much speculation behind it. I just wanted to rap. Anybody that knows me doing music, I wanna just rap.”
He added that he didn't expect to cause controversy with "King of New York” because "I think that’s the case right there of maybe I just dumbed down my lyrics just a little bit."
So what did he mean by "King of New York"?
“The irony of that line is the people that actually understood it and got it, was the actual kings of New York. You know, me sitting down with them this past week and them understanding that it’s not about actually being the king of whatever coast. It’s about leaving a mark as great as Biggie, as great as ‘Pac.”Oh ok then......that makes sense. And we're Team Kendrick for a reason.
Listen to the full interview here: