So Kendrick Lamar dropped in on our Hip Hop Workshop
A group of 46 young musicians were left speechless on 11 March when seven times Grammy Award winner Kendrick Lamar walked into a Brighter Sound hip hop workshop and joined them in a freestyle MC jam.
We’d put together the special workshop after we were approached by creative agency four23 to deliver the activity, who were curating the events surrounding Lamar’s visit to Manchester for Reebok (for whom Lamar is an ambassador), and were keen to connect the artist to local young musicians.
The event took place at The Wonder Inn in Manchester’s Northern Quarter, where we had assembled over forty 15 to 25 year-old members of the city’s young emerging hip hop talent – including MCs, producers, DJs and musicians – to develop their skills in writing and performance.
The appearance of the U.S. artist was a complete surprise to most, having been kept secret from pretty much everyone in the city…
When asked what it meant to have Kendrick Lamar at the workshop, participant Jerrell aka Bxrry said: “For me Friday was more than just a workshop – it was a spiritual thing. As for the cypher with Kendrick, it’s something that was on my bucket list and something as an artist I will cherish forever. Thank you Brighter Sound for one of the best workshops I’ve ever been to.”
Lamar recently won five Grammys at the February Awards, including one for best rap album for his release To Pimp A Butterfly which came out in 2015 to critical acclaim.
Brighter Sound Director, Debra King said “Obviously for Reebok to make this happen is incredible – we were able to offer such an amazing experience for the participants, but for Kendrick Lamar to take the time out to come down is beyond words. We could see how much it meant to the group – it’s enough to inspire young people for a lifetime, and it’ll be remembered by every young person here.”
The artist was fantastic, looking completely at home in a huge huddle of young MCs and onlookers and swapping the mic with anyone who joined the cypher. 30 minutes later after a quick tap on the shoulder from his manager Kendrick headed off to the secret gig at Old Granada Studios leaving the group by saying; “There’s some crazy talent up in here. You all keep doing your dreams and live it out… I will be back – I love you all.”
Needless to say the atmosphere was special. A proud, proud moment for us here at Brighter Sound.
Lead facilitator Danny Fahey from Thirty Pound Gentleman summed it up nicely: “Events like this are priceless experiences for the young artists that are involved, being able to share and connect in a way that shows who they truly are. Kendrick Lamar not just observing but taking part, having fun and really listening to their work is the ultimate. Truly a life changing experience for those young people. The atmosphere was so electric – his enthusiasm and support for the young talent in the room was so clear to see.”
Click here for a clip…