Kendrick Lamar Duckworth is an American rapper, songwriter and record producer. Since his mainstream debut in 2012 with Good Kid, M.A.A.D City, Lamar has been regarded as one of the most influential rappers of his generation. Aside from his solo career, he is also known as a member of the hip hop supergroup Black Hippy alongside his Top Dawg Entertainment label-mates Ab-Soul, Jay Rock, and Schoolboy Q.
Raised in Compton, California, Lamar embarked on his musical career as a teenager under the stage name K.Dot, releasing a mixtape that garnered local attention and led to his signing with indie record label Top Dawg Entertainment. He began to gain recognition in 2010 after his first retail release, Overly Dedicated. The following year, he independently released his first studio album, Section.80, which included his debut single "HiiiPoWeR". By that time, he had amassed a large online following and collaborated with several prominent hip hop artists.
Lamar's major label debut album, Good Kid, M.A.A.D City, was released in 2012 to critical acclaim. It was later certified Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America.