Kendrick Lamar does not see it for GQ, despite being named the GQ Rapper of the Year. He boycotted the magazine’s ‘Men of the Year’ gala b/c of an unflattering profile it printed.
Kendrick was particularly offended that the magazine article detailed the writer’s ‘surprise’ at his discipline — refusing to drink excessively and womanize like other rappers.
The writer also spent a lot of time talking about the gang violence endemic in Kendrick’s hometown of Compton, and it’s prevalence in rap’s history.
“To say he was ‘surprised at our discipline’ is completely disrespectful … Kendrick deserved to be accurately documented. The racial overtones immediately reminded everyone of a time in hip-hop that was destroyed by violence, resulting in the loss of two of our biggest stars [Tupac and B.I.G.] … As a result of this misrepresentation, I pulled Kendrick from his performance at GQ’s annual Man Of The Year party. While we think it’s a tremendous honor to be named as one of the Men Of The Year, these lazy comparisons and offensive suggestions are something we won’t tolerate.”
Kendrick has a point…but pulling out of a performance might not have been the best idea.
The editor-in-chief of GQ has responded to Kendrick’s displeasure. He released a statement via GQ.com:
“Kendrick Lamar is one of the most talented new musicians to arrive on the scene in years. That’s the reason we chose to celebrate him, wrote an incredibly positive article declaring him the next King of Rap, and gave him our highest honor: putting him on the cover of our Men of the Year issue. I’m not sure how you can spin that into a bad thing, and I encourage anyone interested to read the story and see for themselves. We were mystified and sorely disappointed by Top Dawg’s decision to pull him at the last minute from the performance he had promised to give. The real shame is that people were deprived of the joy of seeing Kendrick perform live. I’m still a huge fan.”—Jim Nelson, GQ editor-in-chief