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Hip Hop star Kendrick Lamar Duckworth, who goes by just his first two names, is a different kind of rapper. And unlike Drake, Lil Wayne, Wale and scores of other artists who typically feature lighter-skinned or European-type models in their videos, Lamar has challenged the status quo by requesting a dark-skinned model, Brittany Sky for this Poetic Justice music video.
The Compton, California native wanted to do something different and important, which is why he decided to go for a different type of look. “We had another girl for the lead but I had an idea where I just wanted a little bit of a darker tone [girl] in the video,“ Lamar explains. “It’s almost like a color blind industry where there’s only one type of appeal to the camera,” he said.
Lamar rhymes about the temptations, social struggles and discontent of the experiences he grew up with in Compton, such as experiencing the harsh reality of poverty in one of the richest nations on the planet.
He first gained notoriety after the release of his fourth mixtape, Overly Dedicated, in 2010. In 2012, Lamar released his second studio record, the first under his joint label venture with his previous independent label, Top Dawg, and his new label, Dr. Dre’s Aftermath Entertainment.
Good Kid, m.A.A.d City received critical acclaim and has been certified gold. Although his album was not nominated for a Grammy Award, Lamar’s album was overwhelmingly considered one of the best of 2012. But as Lamar hopes to defy his critics with his music, he continues to defy social norms by celebrating his blackness—his dark-skinned blackness.