Top Dawg Entertainment CEO Anthony Tiffith and Kendrick Lamar decided to cancel the rapper’s performance at GQ’s Men of the Year party because they felt disrespected by the recent interview the publication ran.
K. Dot was due to make an appearance at the event on Tuesday, but pulled out at the last minute.
In the article writer Steve Marsh mentions that Kendrick doesn’t drink or smoke and his family’s alleged gang ties. Marsh also refers to Tiffith as “TDE’s Suge Knight.”
“Much of Kendrick’s music now is an attempt to transcend his ravaged world without separating himself from it in judgment, about somehow gaining control over his household’s chaos—some of his uncles were Crips, and his father was reportedly a Gangster Disciple in Chicago before moving to Compton—and over his neighborhood’s warped commitment to adolescent pride. It’s an ethos that extends to his crew. They have a seriousness of purpose, a rigorous discipline that can feel slightly monastic at times. Kendrick doesn’t smoke weed or drink booze. In the time I spent with him, I never witnessed anyone roll even the thinnest spider leg of a jay, nor did I see Kendrick so much as glance at the many, many girls around him.”
Anthony “Top Dawg” Tiffith
Tiffith told TMZ that GQ’s article was primarily negative and offensive.
“To say he was ‘surprised at our discipline’ is completely disrespectful. Kendrick deserved to be accurately documented,” Tiffith said. “The racial overtones immediately reminded everyone of a time in hip-hop that was destroyed by violence, resulting in the loss of two of our biggest stars [Tupac and B.I.G.] … As a result of this misrepresentation, I pulled Kendrick from his performance at GQ’s annual Man Of The Year party. While we think it’s a tremendous honor to be named as one of the Men Of The Year, these lazy comparisons and offensive suggestions are something we won’t tolerate.”
GQ editor-in-chief Jim Nelson has issued a statement in response to the controversy.
“Kendrick Lamar is one of the most talented new musicians to arrive on the scene in years. That’s the reason we chose to celebrate him, wrote an incredibly positive article declaring him the next King of Rap, and gave him our highest honor: putting him on the cover of our Men of the Year issue. I’m not sure how you can spin that into a bad thing, and I encourage anyone interested to read the story and see for themselves. We were mystified and sorely disappointed by Top Dawg’s decision to pull him at the last minute from the performance he had promised to give. The real shame is that people were deprived of the joy of seeing Kendrick perform live. I’m still a huge fan.”—Jim Nelson,
To read the full Kendrick interview head over to GQ.