Kendrick Lamar has had quite the year: his third studio album 'To Pimp A Butterfly' earned universal acclaim, confirming the Compton rapper's ascendance to the very top and allegedly sending Kanye scuttling back to the studio to re-work his own latest, which was also initially scheduled to drop this year.
But in terms of promotion, Kendrick hasn't excessively toured 'TPAB', bar a run of the festivals in the summer and his current (and rather intimate) Kunta's Groove Sessions tour in the US, which concludes in Oakland, CA tonight. If you're hoping for a UK tour anytime soon, then think again: in a six-minute speech to a sold-out Terminal 5 in New York City last Monday (November 2), Kendrick hinted that these current shows might bring the curtain down on 'TPAB'. Watch the footage below.
Addressing his "day one fans", Kendrick spoke on his relatively low public profile: "I'm a low-key nigga, and I ain't scared of the world... That's been me since day one: I need to be me, goddammit. I think this shit can live forever."
He then spoke on 'TPAB''s huge success: "This album has soared right to the top, with no motherfucking commercial success. God allowed it to be top tier, without a constant radio single or shit. So that proves to you right there that music isn't something [that] you can market all the time. This shit belong to you, and you only, you dig what I'm saying? Some shit that y'all can feel when you're insecure, whether you're vulnerable, mad, happy, angry, sad. You pop this motherfucking tape in, you pop your favourite music in, and you allow artist like myself to come back to these group of people and perform."
And then, the bad news. Tissues out, folks: "This may be the first and last time that I perform 'To Pimp A Butterfly' - [in] 8 to 10 cities. And I made sure that New York would be one of those cities that I would come back to. So with that being said, we're gonna rock this shit until the casket drop."
So there you have it: tonight's show, back in his home state of California, may mark the last time that 'TPAB' is given specialist live treatment by arguably the greatest rapper of his generation.
For everyone else, here's consolation in the form of a medley of 'TPAB' tracks that Kendrick recently performed on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert with his backing band, the Wesley Theory.