In most instances, music groups have seemed nearly destined to fail eventually. Whether it’s personal problems, creative differences, or any other number of issues, countless groups and bands have fallen victim to the break-up.
In an interview with Guerilla Union, Kendrick Lamar explained why Black Hippy, a collective consisting of Kendrick, Jay Rock, Ab-Soul, and ScHoolboy Q, is designed to fare better.
“Numbers. It’s more strength. That’s how I look at it. And when the audience can identify an artist, that’s cool. But when they can identify a crew, they know it’s something bigger than just the movement,” said K. Dot. “It’s a lifestyle they’re bringing to the table as far as music. Just living in the everyday world. So when we say Black Hippy, you know it’s not just music. It’s actually a group of individuals saying fuck the regular, and doing what they want to do in the world, and making a way for themselves without being caught up in the politics. Being themselves, and looking in the mirror, and identifying themselves. People can understand that, they can relate to that, and they can understand that as well.”
Kendrick elaborated, explaining that Black Hippy deliberately wanted to introduce its members as individuals prior to releasing a project as a group. “We had a plan with this shit. We said we was gonna get each individual artist off first, let the world identify them with these artists, and at the end, bring them together was a collective.”
The West Coast emcee touched on the group breakup narrative, and why he felt it wouldn’t apply to Black Hippy. “We feel when a group come together, from the jump, it’s always a stigma where they eventually break up. And that’s because later down the line, everybody have they own creative differences. So what we did was start off with our own creative space, and let each person know what it is, know what we workin’ with, and be familiar with it and bring it together. And what that do is allow each other to know our different abilities. What we capable of and what we like to do, and how we can comprimise with that, rather than say, ‘Fuck that, I don’t want to do that, I don’t want to be on this verse…’ And that’s what happens. That’s why you don’t see this motherfuckers today. They done fall out as friends, fall out as artists, together. We just do it the other way around, and it’s working. Because everyone can identify with Kendrick Lamar, Ab-Soul, Jay Rock, and [Schoolboy q]. And then, when it come together, it’s Black Hippy, they know it’s bigger than that.”
Watch the interview below:
Last year, SCHoolboy Q, Ab-Soul, and Jay-Rock confirmed that there would not be a Black Hippy album, with each member preferring to focus on his own projects.