Kendrick Lamar kicked Top Dawg Entertainment’s year off on the right foot last night with an inspiring performance on Jimmy Fallon, but it sounds like it will be up to his labelmates to keep that momentum going. In an interview with MTV news, TDE's president, Dave Free, mapped out the label's very ambitious plans for 2016.
I’m excited for people to hear the new SZA album..I’m stupid excited for y’all to hear the Isaiah Rashad album. I’m stupid excited for y’all to hear the new Ab-Soul. I’m so excited for y’all to hear Q’s album. Oh my God. These are songs I’ve been living with. I already know what it’s gonna do.
While it’s right to get excited, I recommended you temper your expectations. As we saw last year, January album promises often get broken come December. There are so many moving parts when it comes to an album. From mixing and mastering to reworks, leaks, singles, tours and videos there’s a lot that goes into each and every album, especially with TDE’s emphasis on quality, so four releases in one calendar is a lofty goal, but not an impossible one.
With the exception of Isaiah Rashad’s seemingly imminent album, little to no information is currently available about these projects. So be excited, but also be realistic. And while a new project from Kendrick is highly unlikely, we can always hold out hope for a surprise, maybe in the form of that Kendrick and Cole album the internet's been buzzing about lately. When asked about the joint venture Free explained:
Everything’s a possibility, but I’ma say this, too: Kendrick and Cole are in a place in their careers and in their lives where they have to keep going. Of course they’re two of the biggest rappers out, but they still have to keep grinding. There’s so much work that they have to continue to do….A joint album does sound great, but people need to understand, these are two geniuses...These are two creative guys. It takes a long time for one of them to get in a space to create a song, so to get two of them in a space to do that, it takes a lot of time and energy. It all has to be a singular project, but it just can’t happen overnight.
So be ready, it looks like it’s going to be a big year for Top Dawg, but don’t come for my head if come December the albums playing in your headphones look very different. Ah, what am I talking about? I'm too big of a TDE fan to be realistic. Screw it, I'm not ridiculously excited for these new albums.