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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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One step away
June 8, 2024

Music review: Kendrick’s ‘Berry’ aims at racial issues

The day after Kendrick Lamar won two Grammys for his September release “i,” he released “The Blacker the Berry,” a track addressing racial issues bluntly. The track has accumulated more than one million views in 24 hours on YouTube.
With the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner, a spark for racial justice began and Kendrick Lamar has fueled the fire. Under the raucous snare beat, a high-pitched voice spits the lyrics, “Six in the morning, fire in the street/Burn baby burn, that’s all I wanna see,” referring to Ferguson riots back in 2014.
Lamar continues, “I’m African-American, I’m African/I’m black as the moon, heritage of a small village/Pardon my residence/Came from bottom of mankind.” And after a few vulgarities he continues with an obvious message, “You hate my people, your plan is to terminate my culture.”
Messages like this are not uncommon among rappers. J. Cole and Rick Ross are among rappers who have spoken out against racial injustices. Back in August, The Game released a song titled “Don’t Shoot,” featuring many African-American rappers.
“The Blacker the Berry” is far different than Lamar’s previous single “i” and has raised the bar on the artist’s upcoming, highly anticipated album following, “good kid, m.A.A.d city.”
Jack Riewe is an English junior and life & arts reporter for The Battalion

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