Kendrick Lamar wasn’t sure he should release his latest album Mr. Morale & the Big Steppers.
K. Dot recalled his initial reluctance about the album in an interview with W Magazine. Kendrick Lamar explained why his children played a significant role in the project seeing the light of day.
“When I got to completion and I said, ‘I may or may not put this out. I’m not going to put this out; it’s way too much,’ I thought about my children,” he said. “I thought about when they turn 21, or they’re older in life, and when I got grandchildren, or if I’m long gone—this can be a prerequisite of how to cope. That’s the beauty of it for me.”
Mr. Morale & the Big Steppers featured brutally honest content, which Kendrick Lamar didn’t discuss with some family before it dropped. The 35-year-old rapper wanted his lyrics to be unfiltered.
“The reason why I had to make that decision, whether they was for or against it, I just didn’t want the influence,” he explained. “I could have cut corners and got flashy with it and worded my words a certain way. Nah, I had to be in the rawest, truest form I could possibly be in order for it to be freeing for me, in order for me to have a different outlook and the perspective on people I’m talking to. I had to reap whatever consequences came behind that, and also be compassionate and show empathy if they were hurt by it.”
Kendrick Lamar released Mr. Morale & the Big Steppers in May. The album debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200.