Kendrick Lamar was a Hump Day Hottie contender before I'd even seen his face. See, I've been crushing on his voice for months and months, ever since his songs "Swimming Pools (Drank)," "Poetic Justice" (featuring Drake), and "Bitch, Don't Kill My Vibe" started getting regular airplay on my beloved Hot 97 morning show. Kendrick -- who has a baby face, but is a ripe old 25 -- is an example of a larger trend of underground hip-hop acts finding mainstream success. His first album, Section.80, was released independently and exclusively through iTunes in 2011, and quickly skyrocketed to becoming one of the top digital releases of that year, thanks to the large internet following he had grown organically.
His major label debut, good kid, m.A.A.d city, was released through Dr. Dre's Aftermath Entertainment, Interscope and Top Dawg, and he's been busy touring like crazy with Drake and 2Chainz. Basically, Kendrick Lamar is one of the hottttttest dudes in the hip-hop game right now. His style in definitely influenced by his hip-hop heroes, like Tupac, Biggie, Dr. Dre and Eminem and Rakin, though I find his vocal quality and flow to be unique and refreshing. Doesn't hurt that he samples Janet Jackson on "Poetic Justice" and wrote the hook I most like to improvise on while I'm showering (“Get it wet drank/Pour it out drank/Lather up drank/Rinse it out drank"). I happen to think he's really cute too. Listen to a few of Kendrick's songs here and click through for more pics!