The LA rapper’s new single features a scene-stealing appearance from Kendrick Lamar.
The booming three-part track arrived this morning after a cryptic teaser was released earlier in the week, sending fans racing to see who could reverse it quickest. Split into two “scenes” in a Dave Free-directed video, Keem leads the charge in a horn-heavy opener. But in the song’s second act, Lamar takes off running with a high-octane verse, lacing the back-half of the track with lines targeting rap’s elite and performative activists, while also seemingly addressing taking a quieter approach during the beginning of the pandemic and the police brutality protests of spring and summer 2020. “I been duckin’ the pandemic, I been duckin’ the social gimmicks/I been duckin’ the overnight activists, I’m not a trending topic, I’m a prophet,” Lamar declares, likely referring to the Tupac interview featured on his 2015 album, To Pimp a Butterfly.
“Family Ties” marks Lamar’s second feature of the year, following his appearance on Busta Rhymes’ “Look Over Your Shoulder.” And it’s a proper campaign starter for a number of new projects associated with the Compton rapper. Earlier this year, Lamar and Dave Free launched pgLang with a series of videos for Calvin Klein (starring Keem, of course.) And just last week, Lamar announced his next album with TDE would be his last. So whatever’s on the way appears to be approaching pretty rapidly.
Watch Kendrick Lamar and Baby Keem connect in the “Family Ties” video below. Hold tight for their next transmission.