Kendrick Lamar’s ‘cult classic’ debut album, ‘Section 80,’ is remembered a decade later.


Since its release in 2011, ‘Section 80’ has gone on to become one of Lamar’s most iconic works, as internet dubs him ‘greatest rappers of all time’

Over the past decade, we’ve seen many iconic musicians make their mark. From Justin Beiber to Ed Sheeren, and The Weeknd to James Blake, several debut albums made careers. However, one of the most iconic is clearly Kendrick Lamar. The California rapper dropped his debut studio album ‘Section 80’ on July 2, 2011. A decade on, the album is very much the talk of the town, as social media users rate it one of the best albums from 2011.

Released through Top Dog Entertainment (TDE), ‘Section 80’ became one of the many collaborations between Lamar and the label. In August 2021, the rapper announced he was parting ways with TDE, after one final album. But TDE and ‘Section 80′ will always hold a special place in fans’ hearts. Since the album, he’s gone on to appear on the soundtrack of numerous films like ‘Black Panther’, and ‘Creed II’, as well as scoop up a Pulitzer Prize.

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All that success can be traced back to ‘Section 80’. Born from the pain of losing a friend to the criminal justice system, the song has some powerful themes including the drug epidemic and racism, themes that Lamar would often return to in later works. As the internet can’t stop gushing over ‘Section 80’, we thought it was worth diving into the story of the album, and how Lamar ended up composing a “cult classic”.

The story of ‘Section 80’

Lamar began working on the album in January 2011, after a friend of his was sent to jail for 25 years. “He had no guidance and was caught in that negative stigma of our generation that don’t care about anything and don’t listen to anybody,” Lamar told Billboard in a 2011 interview. “Just the fact that’s gone from him at such a tender age shows me that we have a lot to go as far as listening and being able to critique ourselves as individuals. That’s what ‘Section 80’ represents,” he added.

Over the next few months, Lamar worked on ‘Section 80’ on the tour bus, and in his mother’s kitchen with a purpose. “I always said ‘Section 80’ was just a warm-up for the story I’m trying to tell, he noted. Often leaving songs unfinished until he was struck by an epiphany. Brinkwire Brief News.


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