Ab-Soul Says Kendrick Lamar Is Not His Boss

Ab-Soul says TDE members are not co-workers. He says they are a family.

Ab-Soul, who is finalizing work on his untitled upcoming album, recently spoke about why he is upset when publications print "Kendrick Lamar and Black Hippy."

"I don't want people to think that Kendrick is like Lil Wayne or like 50 Cent," Ab-Soul said in an interview with Montreality. "It's not G-Unit. My boss is not Kendrick. Kendrick didn't sign me. Kendrick didn't add me to his group. This was a collective. Long before it was Black Hippy, we were all together. I just wanted that to be known to the world. Don't get the wrong idea. We're not band members. We don't just stand in the background and dance while Kendrick raps." 

Ab-Soul criticized publications for mislabeling the group shortly following the release of XXL's TDE cover. The cover line on the magazine reads "Kendrick Lamar & Black Hippy." In a Twitter post following the release of the cover, Soul said that if publications continue doing this, he will remove himself from the group.  

Ab-Soul Says TDE Is A Family

During his interview with Montreality, Ab-Soul also clarified that the statement was not one he made out of any malice towards Kendrick Lamar. In fact, Ab-Soul clarified that the two share a bond that is closer than one may share with a colleague when he was asked if he is bothered by constant questions about Kendrick Lamar in his interviews.

"Me and Kendrick aren't co-workers," Ab-Soul said. "That's my brother. That's my family. He deserves everything that's happening. I will answer every question about him. I'm not bothered by that at all. Kendrick's success assists my success. He's gonna be in a platform to present me to his audience one day and if I'm ready, maybe they'll accept me too. For the record, TDE, we are a family. Those are my brothers. I'll take a bullet for them. This is not work. Sure, we competitive. We all wanna be #1, but I want to see all of them be #1. If it's not me, it's gotta be one of them. For the record, I'm not bothered by Kendrick Lamar questions. Ask them all. I'll answer them all." 

Ab-Soul Says Eminem Would Be Foolish To Not Feature Kendrick Lamar

Speaking of Kendrick, Ab-Soul was also asked about his take regarding Lamar's inclusion on Eminem's upcoming The Marshall Mathers LP 2

"Eminem would kind of be foolish not to have him on his album at this point," Soul said. "Especially with the whole Aftermath empire, you've gotta think, that's Dr. Dre. It's very essential that Eminem include [Kendrick Lamar] in that rotation. I appreciate him for doing that. I really do. The Marshall Mathers LP is one of my favorite albums. I can't wait to hear the next part."

Soul also responded to questions about a potential Black Hippy album, a question that he's been asked several times since the group began making music together. 

"I think it'll happen when the time is right, when that check is right," Soul said. 

Ab-Soul Says He'd Like To Collaborate With Jay Z

During the interview, Soul was also asked about an artist he would like to collaborate with. 

"Jay Z," Ab-Soul said. "Hands down...If I can get a record with Jay before he checks out, mission complete. If I can bring out the Reasonable Doubt Jay, I'd be pretty fuckin' happy. But Jay is Jay. I can't really box him in to a certain sound. He really transcends every time." 

More from this interview can be viewed below.

RELATED: Ab-Soul Criticizes Publications Mislabeling Black Hippy



  • 123

    I like some of these new school rappers man. Niggas still dress like they ain't got shit and focus everything into the music. Respect from The Bahamas.

  • Anonymous

    Kendrick wouldn't make a good leader anyway. He's a follower. A soft as a pillow, fake gangsta with sounds like Patti Labelle on speed, and who despite having a major co-sign by Dre, got outsold by Macklemore lol The show's over folks. Nothing to see here. Go home.

  • gun di liro

    Kendrick is the Justin Timberlake or Beyonce of the group. Every group has that one member that stands out or above the rest. Busta Rhymes and Leaders of the New School is another example.

  • Paul

    He must realise they meant "Kendrick Lamar" & "Black Hippy" as they are two separate acts and there was a part in the magazine about Black Hippy and a part just about Kendrick. No one thinks Black Hippy is called "Kendrick Lamar & Black Hippy" and no one thinks Kendrick is the leader, be real.

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  • TRE

    man do i see a "black hippy" collapse coming soon. Who doesnt at this poinT. everyone will stay mixtape relevant and K Dot will continue to become huge. (btw i like everyone in BH more then Kendrick over all so im not a "stan") just think Kendrick is slightly overrated and everyone else on TDE deserves more shine then their getting

  • hifive

    Black Hippy is bringing back that originality into this industry. Each of them are bringing back something that hip hop lacks today... And you Q haters make me laugh. He bout to blow up and UOENO Changing the game one step at a time Hiiipower

  • genoO

    not a fan of kendrick, but he is easily the best and most popular in tde, the others are just "ok"

    • BorisXp

      dude, u just said OK? don't say that never again, go listen to Q, Rock and Soulo albums and mixtapes

    • Anonymous

      tde would be indie balls without that kdot album - that was first studio album from Kendrick, Jay Rock released Follow Me Home (which was dope), Q & Soulo haven't released their first studio albums yet. Have an opinion after the others have released their full studio debuts. All four emcees are killing the industry right now.

    • Anonymous

      geneO right. Kdot needs his own movement... tde would be indie balls without that kdot album

    • Daddy

      Shut up nigga. Go listen to some TDE tapes. He gets eaten up some times and visa versa. Q is the weakest lyrical in that group. The 3 others go back and forth lyrically with eachother. Idk about "ok" but they can hang.

  • Art Brooks

    Sensitive rapper...

  • Sh*T

    He has a point. He also gave Kendrick the props he deserve. Either y'all disagreeing with him are serious Kendrick stans or y'all just missed the point entirely. They are homies. They are a collective. They aren't a band built around one person. It's cool to say "Michael Jackson and the Jackson 5" because they were a band. It's cool to say "50 cent and G-Unit" because though they weren't a band, 50 signed them and made sure they stayed under him on all facets. You never heard sh*t like "Raekwon and the Wu-Tang Clan" or "Jam Master Jay and Run DMC" or "Dr. Dre and N.W.A." or "Q-Tip and A Tribe Called Quest" or "Black Thought and The Roots" y'all get the point, I can go on and on. But the reason behind why you don't hear sh*t like that is because they were a collective; a group of different personalities and styles, not a group or band formed around one key player. Even if some were weaker than others, they were identified as a group, not an individual and then the group. And the reason why Jay Rock doesn't say anything is because he was first, he had his time at the forefront. Remember when Top Dawg put together everything, Jay Rock was the only one signed to him, then came Kendrick which led to the "no sleep til nyc" tape. Then Q came and last was Soul. They were all just artist signed to Top. Black Hippy came years after when they decided they should start calling themselves something as a unit instead of titling songs like: Jay Rock, Ab-Soul, Schoolboy Q, Kendrick Lamar - [insert title here] .. Black Hippy was easier. Since it wasn't built around Kendrick, it shouldn't be Kendrick including them, it should be them as a whole. Even if Kendrick is the reason why they're known, it's the principle and that's what Soul is getting at. It makes perfect sense.

  • industry insider

    Eminem is making a wack album on purpose to make kenny look like a descent lyricist. Interscope and their marketing schemes. Lol

  • pete

    ab soul n school boy q hating on kendrik school boy q will flop with his ab soul,only kendrik n jayrock are true mcees,thats y kendrik featured jay rock on good kid maad city,kendrik blew up because of dr dre now ab soul think TDE is famous no one knows TDE

  • Anonymous

    bitter ass nigga after you flop you gonna wish thats what people wrote to sell your wack ass albums

  • Anonymous

    marketing tactic clever one too because it still works k good, now look at the others jay rock was murdering them bars on bet

  • Fish

    Ever notice that in all these articles the one man who never moans and groans is Jay Rock? Thats because he knows he's a sick rapper and doesn't need to worry about small fry shit like who's name gets mentioned first. And lets be honest - it was jay Rock who started this TDE shit. He was dropping sick tapes before any of you had even heard of K. Dot - FACT! All four of them are awesome though.

    • Anonymous

      ab souls seems very outspoken and maybe sensitive. but jay rock is the cool cat in the background and yeah he was the first to put tde on the map. it seemed like he was gonna be the one who was gonna be the star

  • ok

    i get bothered when i see this too. personally, i enjoy the sound of kendrick the most of anyone in black hippy, but soul is a genius. nobody's music has as incredible concepts and ideas and makes me think as much as soul's does. he has every right to be mentioned alongside kendrick, not below him

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  • Anonymous

    damn that nigga ugly

  • HunnaBandz

    aint nobody bumpin ab souls weak backpack ass in the hood its all about jeezy ti pusha t meek mill kirko bangz and shit the hood dont fuck with backpackers street lyricists is were its at niggas

  • jakem415

    They put Kendricks name above the group name so it'll grab attention. Soul and Q are feelin themselves a little too much.

  • Anonymous

    Yes he is. Without Kendrick you are all just average to good rappers but nothing special.

  • /

    i just cant believe eminem was mentioned and hhdx didnt feature it as part of the title

  • Trash Soul

    Only reason you even have a shot in hip-hop is cuz of Kendrick, otherwise no one would give a fuck about you, whiny ass nigga

  • Anonymous

    Until these other cats make platinum albums, it will be Kendrick Lamar and Black Hippy. Reasonable Doubt Jay-Z skipped town a long ass time ago.

  • Anonymous

    Only corny whites & suburban black boys listen to ab soul music. We bumping pusha t over here tho..!!

  • D.O.

    Eminem doesn't really NEED a feature with Kendrick Lamar...

  • Anonymous

    kendrick is the most famous member so the media will treat him different go listen to d-12 my band and dont get emotional

    • Black De La Rocha

      The only thing is, most of D12 either sucked ass or was painfully average at rapping. Every member of TDE can actually rap, Soul especially.

    • Anonymous

      that's real. Em also would not be foolish to not have Ken on his album. The label probably begged or made it happen

  • Anonymous

    so you can take your top 5 dead or alive and put me after EM

  • Anonymous

    Ab soul fucks with Eminem hard!!!!!!

  • james

    I love this cats flow....i want to hear him over soulful mind beats..they got that out of this world shhh...the whole black hippy is nice ..I think they should of dropped a cd soon as they signed major rigt after lamar....to brand them...like dr dre branded the whole squad on the chronic...lots of mainstream fans dont know who ab soul is still or none of the others...

  • Anonymous

    Preach brother! Leave it to the media (magazines, websites, music channels etc) to start messing it up for artists at times...

  • Anonymous

    i like that ab soul is being his own guy and not saying yes sir like Q

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