Watch Kendrick Lamar's Blistering Performance on 'The Late Show With Stephen Colbert'
Back in December, Kendrick Lamar closed out The Colbert Report as its last official musical guest. Wednesday, he helped Stephen Colbert start a new chapter. On Wednesday, the rapper appeared as the second musical guest ever on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.
Numerous publications hailed Lamar's December performance of a still-untitled track as one of the top late night performances of the year. For Wednesday's appearance, Lamar ran through a medley of songs from To Pimp a Butterfly that fans likely know well, but twisted them in ways they've never heard before.
In true musical mastermind fashion, Lamar rarely plays a song the same way twice. He opened spitting "Wesley's Theory" a cappella over a series of hits from his band before transitioning into "Momma," "King Kunta" and "u," the latter of which included a new verse. He led the band through the complex breaks and changes with the dynamism of a Motown frontman.
The way Lamar flowed through the different songs, meshing verses together, the performance felt like a singular, frenetic poem. Though the performance covered a lot of ground, it still only hit on a fraction of the meanings and stories that make up To Pimp a Butterfly, or the unpredictable epicness that is his live set.
Watch the full performance below: