Throughout his music, Kendrick Lamar makes it clear that no matter how successful or popular he becomes, he’ll always be a Compton native at heart. His ties to his roots, and the West Coast rap scene as a whole, are referenced on good kid, m.A.A.d city and this year’s superb To Pimp a Butterfly, as the MC acknowledges the personal challenges he faces are not only his own, but shared with those in his community. In a way, he’s become the voice of the city.
Now, Compton, or more specifically, the 35th Senate District where the city is located, has returned the favor to K-Dot. Yesterday, state Senator Isadore Hall III presented Lamar with the prestigious Generational Icon award, commending him for his countless achievements and global success, and continued representation of his hometown. In his acceptance speech, Kendrick spoke humbly about the importance of giving back to Compton and being the right kind of role model. Watch footage of the whole ceremony below, followed by pictures from his meetings with Hill and California Governor Jerry Brown.