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Kendrick Lamar Takes Over XXL’s Winter Issue



Kendrick Lamar Takes Over XXL's Winter Issue

After covering last year’s Winter issue, Kendrick Lamar returns a second time not only covering XXL, but writes his own editorial as well. Picking up where he left off, the TDE spitter talks about the impact of his sophomore LP To Pimp A Butterfly, the pressures of being a rapper, change, and much more.

Read an excerpt from the cover story below:

It’s funny because I ask other artists about their experience with success. I wanna know what happened to them. Did you feel how I feel? When did everything change for you? When did you start noticing the ways you were acting differently? Or when the people around you changed how they treated you? Or just, how did your world change? For me, the whole complete world changed within six months of good kid, m.A.A.d. city coming out. It wasn’t about the money change, although, that did happen, but it was like I stared seeing who I really was during that first run and learned more on the second. Either you notice who you are who are or what you ain’t pretty fast when you get fame.

The past few years or so has been very politically charged and controversial. From Trayvon Martin, to Eric Garner to Michael Brown and issues of police brutality and racism and for so many other reasons. All of it has really struck a nerve with me because when you experience things like that personally and you know the type of hardships and pain that it brings first-hand, it builds a certain rage in you. It brings back memories of when I’m 16 and the police come kicking the door in. They don’t care that I’m a little boy and they stumped me in my back two times and they dragged me out the house and have us all handcuffed. It brings back those memories. Memories of losing loved ones. It brings back some of the most painful memories and deepest thoughts of real life situations that I didn’t even want to address on good kid. Or wasn’t ready to. Rage is the perfect word for it.

But I think about how I’m two-projects in and you have the world saying I’m the one. And I’m still trying to figure out who I even am. My little sister is 16, my little cousin is 20, my younger brother is 10, they all looking at me like that. When they friends around, they friends can’t walk pass me without asking a million questions about my lyrics. I can’t go to their schools without the same thing. Just having the amount of love and energy that these younger fans bring and how enthused they are from just talking with me about important topics. And I’m sitting there thinking, “These kids are really listening to me.” But why am I the one to get this opportunity? And how do I keep that from going to my head and not have an ego? How do I balance it out?

I know I’m chosen. I know I’m a favorite. I know in my heart there’s a whole other energy and leadership side of me that I have probably run from my whole life. How much power do I want? How much can I handle? That’s the question I keep asking myself. ’Cause when you are a voice for the youth, nothing can stop you. The youth is what changes things. Can I lead that? Should I? I get confused because people are championing me to be that vocal point and it’s a challenge for me to be that because I have some fear of that type of power. This goes back to me being who I naturally am or who think that I am now, that 28-year-old kid that’s kind’ve a recluse. But 28 is old enough for me to figure out who I am and have that power at the same time, that’s the battle and it’s a trip.


Nicki Minaj Sits with Ebro to Talk ‘Pink Friday 2′ on Apple Music



Nicki Minaj Sits with Ebro to Talk ‘Pink Friday 2' on Apple Music miixtapechiick

Nicki Minaj has been quite active on a promotional run to accompany her fifth studio album, “Pink Friday 2.” From sitting down with Kai Cenat to Joe Budden, the self-proclaimed Queen of rap continues her campaign by engaging in an interview with Ebro Darden for Apple Music.

Throughout the interview, the ‘FTCU‘ artist talks about the latest album, her newest signee to her record label Heavy On It, protecting her peace, collaborating with Drake and J. Cole, and much more.

Watch the interview above.

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Apple Music Interviews Rihanna Ahead of Apple Music Super Bowl Halftime Show



Apple Music Rihanna

Last month, Apple Music announced Rihanna’s Road to Halftime ahead of Super Bowl LVII campaign.

Ahead of Apple Music Super Bowl LVII Halftime Show on Sunday, February 12, 2023, at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona, Apple Music Radio’s Nadeska Alexis will interview Rihanna at the Super Bowl LVII Halftime Show Press Conference.

Viewers can tune in live or watch on demand on Apple Music; on @AppleMusic’s TikTok, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter; or on the NFL Network.

Rihanna tells Apple Music about how she started the process of creating her setlist

The set list was the biggest challenge. That was the hardest hardest part. Deciding how to maximize 13 minutes, but also celebrate. That’s what this show’s gonna be, it’s gonna be a celebration of my catalogue in the best way we could have put it together. And you only have 13 minutes, that’s the challenge, so you’re trying to cram 17 years of work into 13 minutes. So it’s difficult. You know, some songs we have to lose because of that, and that’s gonna be okay. But I think we did a pretty good job of narrowing it down.

Rihanna tells Apple Music’s about the physical demands of getting ready for Sunday’s game.

The physical challenge has definitely been immense, for many reasons, of course. But, I haven’t done this in a minute. First thing’s first, so you’re just running around for 13 minutes, trying to put a two hour set in 13 minutes, and you’re gonna see on Sunday, it just, from the time it starts, it just never ends until it’s like the very last second. Now I’m saying too much? But it’s a jam-packed show, and it takes a toll on your body, it does.

We’re excited to do the Super Bowl. We are. We’ve been working on it for awhile, and every day it just gets closer and closer to the finished product. And today’s a really big rehearsal, really important one, so that’s gonna be crucial for Sunday.

Rihanna on the cultural significance of this Apple Music Halftime Show moment.

I mean, it’s a long way from home, right? It’s a long way from home. It’s a beautiful journey that I’m on, and I could’ve never guessed that I would have made it here. So it’s a celebration of that. I’m excited to do that. I’m really excited to have Barbados on the Super Bowl stage.

Rihanna tells Apple Music about where she is headed musically.

Musically, I’m feeling open. I’m feeling open to exploring, discovering, creating, things that are new, things that are different, things that are off, weird, might not ever make sense to my fans, you know, the people that know the music that I put out. I just want to play. I want to have fun. I want to have fun with music.

Rihanna on work-life balance as a mom.

Yes, it’s very different. The balance is almost impossible because no matter how you look at it, work is always something that’s gonna rob you of time with your child. That’s the currency now. That’s where it goes. The magnitude of how much it weighs. When you make decisions on what you’re gonna say yes to, it has to be worth it.

Rihanna on her favorite album and favorite album to record from her catalog.

Okay, I really enjoyed recording Loud and “Diamonds.” I was on the road for both of those albums when I created them. I was touring one album, making the next, and then I came back and toured that album and made the next, and then ANTI was the first time that I took my time making an album while not being on tour. And that frustrated my fans a bit, and here I am doing it again to them. But ANTI, for sure, top favorite album I’ve ever made.

Rihanna on the most important thing she’s learned in order to succeed.

To stay humble. Stay humble because if not this industry will humble you one way or the other. And, you know, my humility came from my childhood growing up in the Caribbean, growing up in my household with my mom. She’s a very humble woman. Her mom was a very humble woman. And I’ve never, I’ve never lost sight of that. That’s very important to me. I often fear the pedestal that the world can you put you on. And I always want to feel my feet on the ground. That makes me feel safe.

Rihanna on her transition back to music and her love of road trips.

The pandemic kind of, in a weird way, forced me to slow down. And then when you have all these boundaries and restraints and rules and you have to stay home, you kind of get creative with ways to stay entertained, in a way. Road tripping was one of those things that I’ve always loved, I just usually road trip while I’m on tour. That’s the road trip. So I got to feel the things I love about tour without having the commitment of the show every single day. It was just nice to appreciate that time. I really enjoyed it, actually.

Rihanna tells Apple Music about being unapologetic.

I’m definitely not one that’s worried about coming off too bossy. I’ve been bossy all my life. Ever since I was a little girl, but [this performance] is riding on me, you know? There are a lot of people who are a part of this show, and huge part of the reason why this show’s gonna be as incredible as it is, and I couldn’t have done it without them. But you know what, at the end of the day, if it flops or it flies, my name has to stand by that. And so I really get involved with every aspect of anything that I do, whether it’s the Super Bowl, whether it’s a makeup product, whether it’s Savage lingerie, like, whatever I do, I’m that annoying girl who’s gonna talk about everything. I want to see the copy on the website! I want to name every lipstick that I make. I care about it. I love it. I love it, I really do.

Rihanna tells Apple Music about sticking to her core values

It’s true, it’s true, a lot of my core values have never left me. A lot of the lessons I’ve learned in my earliest years I have never forgotten. I carry them throughout my life and my career.

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Travis Scott Sits Down to Speak On ASTROWORLD Fest Tragedy With Charlamagne Tha God



Travis Scott Sits Down to Speak On ASTROWORLD Fest Tragedy With Charlamagne Tha God

Last month’s tragedy at Travis Scott’s ASTROWORLD Fest left ten people dead after a crowd surge ensued with over 50,000 in attendance. Since the horrific night, almost 300 lawsuits have been filed against the rapper and more recently, Scott is now asking for 11 of those lawsuits to be dismissed, according to KPRC2NEWS.

For the first time, Travis Scott is speaking on the incident with The Breakfast Club’s Charlamagne Tha God on his segment, A Conversation with Lenard. During the 51-minute interview, Travis Scott speaks on how he’s coping with the aftermath of ASTROWORLD Fest, his apology being mocked, finding out when things got bad at ASTROWORLD, and much more.

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