Rapper Kendrick Lamar finally responded to his controversial “King of New York” line on Big Sean‘s “Control” track, which instantly became a summer hit, during a recent interview with “Big Boy‘s Neighborhood” on Power 106.
Kendrick, who took shots at numerous MCs on the “Control” track, answered questions about why he named dropped other rappers, all the responses he has received from them including fans, and explained why he called himself the King of New York.
Here’s what he had to say about the King of New York line:
“Honestly I didn’t know there would be so much speculation behind it. I just wanted to rap. Anybody that knows me doing music, I wanna just rap.”
“I think that’s the case right there of maybe I just dumbed down my lyrics just a little bit.”
He then added, “the irony of that line is the people that actually understood it and got it, was the actual kings of New York. You know, me sitting down with them this past week and them understanding that it’s not about actually being the king of whatever coast. It’s about leaving a mark as great as Biggie, as great as ‘Pac.’”
Listen to the full interview below:
Kendrick also stopped by Hot97’s Peter Rosenberg to chat about all the responses and positive feedback he’s received from his “King of New York” line.
“It made me go back in and feel like I gotta probably dumb down my lyrics nowadays for the people that take it way out of context the way that they did. The irony behind it all is … the ones to really understood context of the line is the kings of New York that I met with this week.
The cats that I’ve sat down with this past week. It’s not about what coast, it’s not about what side we on. It’s about being as great as Biggie and Pac, the two cats that I reference from jump. I feel like I’m a student.
I’m a student of the work they did. Eventually when I put down my 20 years in the game I can eventually plant my foot and have that same type my legacy. But for people who are trying to make it something that it’s not, I would never try to take the history from what Pac and BIG laid. And, to keep it 100 with you, Snoop will always be number 1.”