In what may be hip hop’s biggest ever plot twist, Kendrick Lamar was awarded a Pultizer prize for his album “DAMN.”
The album lost out on the Grammy award for album of the year in January, an award that instead went to Bruno Mars and was indeed well deserved. However, on Monday Kendrick Lamar became the first rapper to win the Pulitzer Prize for music. He’s also the first winner outside of the categories of classical or jazz music since the award began in 1943.
The administer of prizes, Dana Canedy, said: “This is a big moment for hip hop and a big moment for the Pulitzers.”
She said that the decision was unanimous with the board calling the album “a virtuosic song collection unified by its vernacular, authenticity and rhythmic dynamism that offers affected vignettes capturing the complexity of modern African-American life.”
Critic for The Nation, David Hajdu, who was one of the music jurors, said that there was “quite a lot of enthusiasm for it” and that when it was listened to there was zero dissent: “A lively and constructive conversation, but no dissent”.
Other finalists and past winners have taken to social media to congratulate Mr Lamar, though some people have been less than pleased with the result. Most people, however, recognise Mr Lamar’s contribution to music and find themselves, like Mr. Hajdu and the rest of the team assembled to deliberate, saying: “Listen to this – this is brilliant”.