Kendrick Lamar’s “Alright” Becomes a New Anthem

The social and political influence of Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp a Butterfly just continues to grow. We here at H&E have previously touched on the influence of tracks such as Mortal Man, and it would appear that yet another track on this masterpiece of an album, Alright, has become an anthem of sorts to represent the harrowing state of racial affairs in the United States.

The racial profiling and social injustice towards the African American community is well documented, and his definitely been placed at the forefront of the political agenda within the US, with every topic from police brutality to the confederate flag being put on the table for discussion. A video has emerged which provides an iconic image that speaks to the influence that Kendrick has amongst his own community, and his ability to voice the concerns of his generation. Voicing their concern at the arrest of a fourteen year old, a crowd of protestors launch into a rousing rendition of the chorus of the song, repeating “We gon’ be alright!” voicing their unity in a peaceful way.

Kendrick himself does not preach violence, and it is an amazing image to see the words of a rapper uniting people as their voice their defiance of the current social context that they are subjected to. While the rest of the world is caught up on silly Twitter feuds and diss tracks, it is refreshing to see the impact that music can have on the social landscape; and to see people unite for the greater good. Kendrick Lamar is incredibly important to hip-hop, and he is continuing to prove his importance as a public figure, an influential artist who brings the true issues of the world to the forefront.