In 10 years, Kendrick Lamar has become one of the rap game’s crown holders. The elusive MC has one of the most solid bodies of work in hip-hop, with four acclaimed solo studio albums, his last being the 2017 Grammy Award-winning LP, DAMN., which feels like it came out a decade ago. With each album, Kendrick proves his mettle as one of the most versatile and though-provoking orators the genre has seen. His knack for picking production that fits him to a T is uncanny. In his four-year absence from music, Kendrick Lamar type beats have been popping up on YouTube as fledgling producers try to capture the Compton, Calif. rapper’s musical essence.
Kendrick as an artist is a chameleon, able to seamlessly adapt to different production palettes. Section.80, his 2011 debut album, was an unheralded tour de force. Darker in tone, K-Dot delivered flawless flows just as easily on songs like the syrupy Sounwave-produced “A.D.H.D” and the frantic horn-driven soundscape on “Rigamortus,” a Willie B creation.
On 2012’s good kid, M.A.A.D. city, Kendrick once again proved he was up to task with a wide spectrum of production ranging from the action movie scene score vibes of “Backseat Freestyle,” produced by Hit-Boy to more dulcet tones like “Bitch Don’t Kill My Vibe,” produced by Sounwave; “Swimming Pools (Drank),” produced by T-Minus; and “Poetic Justice,” produced by Scoop DeVille. While airy, mid-tempo joints are his bag–which has been the excuse for his detractors to call his music boring–Kung Fu Kenny is a versatile hit-maker.
His third studio LP, To Pimp a Butterfly in 2015, saw a swing in a new direction. The cerebral project is fused with plush jazz and funk samples, which play on the overall tone of the album. “King Kunta,” produced by Sounwave, is a punchy edict, with progressing chords and a familiar James Brown sample, while the Rahki-produced “i” follows a similar soul-filled vein. The crown jewel and Grammy Award-winning anthem, “Alright,” features lively percussion and a memorable saxophone serenade handpicked by Pharrell and Sounwave.
Kendrick may step out onto a new lane on his forthcoming fifth album as there were rumors in 2019 that this LP will be rock-influenced.
With nearly half a decade without a new LP from the future rap Hall of Famer, fans have been waiting for a new K-Dot project to boost the rap landscape like a stimulus check. That hasn’t stopped rising producers from formulating tracks via YouTube fit for the rapper based on his past production choices.
While we patiently wait for Kendrick’s return from his four-year sabbatical, lose yourself in several solid Kendrick Lamar types beats we’ve curated from YouTube below.
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