The Samples That Fueled ‘good kid, m.A.A.d city’
#MAADweek continues to celebrate the fifth anniversary of good kid, m.A.A.d city by reflecting on the samples that fueled the album.
Kendrick Lamar is a savant. A genius. A man out of time amongst the rest of his peers and ahead of the curve. As we continue to inch upon the fifth anniversary of his first Interscope-supported, second TDE studio album, good kid, m.A.A.d city — Kung-Fu Kenny’s effort is still an oft talked about project no matter the year. In a cover story he recently did with Datwon Thomas of Vibe / Billboard, the Compton legend shared how there were multiple versions of good kid, while he was still refining the projects sound.
Mixtape Monday: @Okayplayer Celebrates ‘good kid, m.A.A.d city’ 5th Anniversary
It was that sound—curated by the likes of Sounwave, Digi-Phonics, Pharrell Williams and DJ Dahi—that helped cement those cinematic elements into good kid, m.A.A.d city. The tension of riding around with the homies with bad intentions on “The Art of Peer Pressure” feels frightening as every turn is fraught with danger, while celebrating being cool and free on “Bitch, Don’t Kill My Vibe” is a valve of relief for anyone dealing with stressors and negativity.
Those beat selections were influenced by the samples used as ingredients to make good kid, m.A.A.d city one of the most flavorful albums of the 21st century. And anyone worth their Gucci in hip-hop nerditry knows that a great hip-hop album is only as good as its samples. Despite other beat selectors harnessing the sounds of Suspekt, Beach House and Twin Sister to showcase the diverse range of influence on good kid, m.A.A.d city — we here @Okayplayer decided to go a different route. On the following pages, we highlight just how these samples were a dream come true for such a cinematic mind like Kendrick Lamar, and discuss just how they fueled good kid, m.A.A.d city to be the classic it shall forever be known as.