Toronto's own brash and energetic rap collective, Notes To Self | BBRC, is paying tribute to Kendrick Lamar's prolific 2012 release, Good Kid, M.A.A.D. City, with "Backseat Freestyle, Freestyle." The track and video, featuring Ruffnotes and remixed by Book & Bronze, arrives at a fitting time, as the music scene celebrates the four-year anniversary of the Top Dawg release, which earned Lamar four nominations at the 56th Grammy Awards, including Album of the Year. The record charted at #2 on the Billboard 200 during the first week of its release, selling 242,000 copies.
To this day, it remains as a hip-hop staple for the era, and an example of the genre's perfect concept record. Following a poetic narrative of Lamar's battle in gang purgatory, and West Coast life, lyrics are hard to match and easy to follow. "Backseat Freestyle" is one of them - have you ever experienced a festival crowd of thousands screaming about dick size and France's national monument in unison? I don't think so.
For a local, flip, check out Notes to Self BBRC's freestyle rendition below, and read the liner notes for in-depth details about the album.