Kendrick Lamar won the 2018 Pulitzer Prize in music for his album DAMN., making him the first non-jazz or classical musical artist to win the award.
— The Pulitzer Prizes (@PulitzerPrizes) April 16, 2018
Since the albums release in April 2017, it has found major commercial success and many critics approval. The album certified multi-platinum album, according to the Recording Industry Association of America, and the album has sold more than 1 million copies in traditional album sales. DAMN. also won the Grammy for Best Rap Album.
So, what makes DAMN. good enough to win such a prestigious award? The Pulitzer Prize Board explained it best, calling it, “a virtuosic song collection unified by its vernacular authenticity and rhythmic dynamism that offers affecting vignettes capturing the complexity of modern African-American life.”
Lamar’s sharp, playful, thought-provoking, complex, socially relevant lyrics make his music a platform to call out the bullshit in society. It’s not just “noise” or “a bunch of swear words” like your mom likes assume it is. Here are 16 one-liners from DAMN. that prove Lamar deserves this Pulitzer Prize.
“Ain’t no black power when your baby killed by a coward”
“I put my lyric and my lifeline on the line”
“I don’t do it for the ‘Gram, I do it for Compton.”
“I got hustle though, ambition, flow, inside my DNA.”
“I’m talkin’ fear, fear that my humbleness is gone.”
“At 27 years old, my biggest fear was bein’ judged.”
“Why God, why God do I gotta suffer?”
“Pain in my heart carry burdens full of struggle.”
“That word is only a color, it ain’t facts no mo’.”
“Internet blogs and pulpit, fill ’em with gossip.”
“The feelin’ of an apocalypse happenin’.”
“A perfect world is never perfect, only filled with lies.”
“Promises are broken, and more resentment comes alive.”
“I’m so fuckin’ sick and tired of the Photoshop.”
“We all woke up, tryna tune to the daily news; Looking for confirmation, hoping the election wasn’t true.”
“A true comedian, you gotta love him, you gotta trust him. ”
Lamar’s carefully crafted lyrics have deep meaning towards socially relevant events. It’s not noise, it’s a movement. Lamar is truly a musical and lyrical genius who is very much deserving of the Pulitzer Prize.
What is your favorite lyric from DAMN.? Comment below!