Kendrick Lamar Was the Fourth Rapper to Hear 9th Wonder's "Duckworth" Beats

"These are three different rappers rappers—rappers-everybody-knows rappers."

One of the many highlights on Kendrick Lamar's outstanding new album DAMN. is "Duckworth," a spellbinding record that tells the story of how TDE CEO Anthony "Top Dawg" Tiffith could have killed Kendrick's father Ducky when they were teenagers.

While it's impossible to imagine the album without "Duckworth," according to the song's producer 9th Wonder, Kendrick wasn't the first emcee to hear or select any of the three beats that would eventually make up the 14th and final track on the LP.

"The three beats that ended up being on 'Duckworth,' I had played for three different people," 9th toldComplex, adding, "The three different people, they picked it, but they never used it at all. And these aren't three different everyday rappers. These are three different rappers rappers—rappers-everybody-knows rappers. But they never used the beats."



Stepping Into Cico P’s Texas

East Texas native Cico P makes a case for not sleeping on his city. He breaks down his sound for Audiomack World.


Juls’ Journey Through the Diaspora

Juls helped build up Afrobeats from a footnote in global pop music into a full and highly-cited chapter. He breaks it down for Audiomack World.


Don Toliver, Tame Impala & 5an: Best of the Week

Don Toliver, Tame Impala, 5an, and more, all had the best new songs on Audiomack this week.

As the story goes, shortly after Rapsody—who is signed to 9th's Jamla Records—worked on Kendrick's GRAMMY-winning To Pimp a Butterfly, 9th played "like 15 beats in the studio one night" for Kendrick. After several months with no communication, Kendrick eventually sent a text message of a short video clip of the song that would eventually become "Duckworth" to 9th, which featured three of the beats fused into one song.

Similar to Steve Lacy, 9th Wonder's path to a production credit on an Album of the Year contender wasn't a straight line, but in the world of beat placements, that is par for the course.



Kendrick Lamar & Don Cheadle Go Toe-to-Toe in "DNA." Video

The hardest song of 2017 just received a video treatment.

Kendrick Lamar, art, illustration

Kendrick Lamar Is Hoarding Beats

“He has like 97,000 gigs of beats from everybody."


9th Wonder Reveals the Emcee at the Top of His Bucket List

The legendary producer has a legendary emcee in mind for his next album.


Future Releases "Mask Off" Remix Featuring Kendrick Lamar, Listen Now

"How y'all let a conscious nigga go commercial while only making conscious albums?"