Vince Staples is a quote machine.
On Tuesday, MTV Hip-Hop released a sit-down interview with Staples, during which MTV News contributors Nadeska Alexis and Adam Fleischer sat down with the witty west coast emcee to discuss all of the biggest stories of 2015.
Toward the end of their conversation, which took place in a relaxed yet staged environment filled with french fries and kale salads, Staples was asked by Fleischer about the comparisons that are made by industry heads and fans alike between his work and To Pimp A Butterfly artist Kendrick Lamar.
"We get compared because we're black, from the ghetto and we don't smoke weed. And because we rap consciously, quote unquote."
Staples is often funny, hell, we even named him the Most Interesting Rapper of 2015, but his response here, delivered partly in jest, is as real and honest as it gets. Any comparison that is made between Staples and Lamar is lazy, based strictly on geography, age and lyrical content.
On the heels of recently-made comments about a past desire to join a gang in order to kill people and completely walking away from rap within the next two years, some Staples fans might find it difficult to separate the real from the show. But when he says, "We're in that box. It's me, him and J. Cole," it doesn't take a hip-hop historian or in-depth Genius analysis to understand what he means.
That said, if in an effort to make great music, one where an emphasis is placed on a full body of work over dime a dozen radio records, further comparison is made to another forward-thinking emcee who has blazed a successful trail over the past five years and has the attention of millions of fans across the world, Staples should embrace the linkage.
We're all judged by the company that we keep and Lamar has proven to be great company.
[by DJ Z, who believes Staples Summertime '06 album is one of the best of 2015. Image via MTV.]