We continue our serialized analysis of Kendrick Lamar's To Pimp a Butterfly by dissecting "For Free?"
Follow Dissect on social media @dissectpodcast. Purchase Dissect merch at dissectpodcast.com.
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
Welcome to dissect long for musical analysis broken into short, digestible episodes. I'm your hosts caucus today. We continue our analysis of chemical bars to fit the butterfly and our last episode. We explore the Alps. Opening track Wesley SIRI. We were. sure do so. The arms protagonist, a young version of Kendrick Lamar, Compton Native, who has recently vaulted until world of fame and fortune through rap music. We also met the antagonist Uncle SAM, who represents the american dream and looks to pimped young Kendrick for profit. Today, we dissected
next track for free these dick eight three, you looking at me like an intimacy like an ever made, is meeting your left. Overs IRAN meet these dig eight even in captivity. Raise my gives out for free is explosive expressively, potent interlude a belt free jazz, spoken, word and slammed style. Poetry in Iraq is unapologetic critique of american capitalism and its tarnish rooms. Courteous by as far as the track features Barton himself on outdoor sex, Robert Losberne, piano, and Roberts, but see right on drugs, the track begin so the rising solo. Saxophone ascending from silence like a midnight mating, call answered by cacophony of drums base, Oregon Qatar, inquire
a theme based on dissonant intervals emerges from the chaos and settles into a bustling Sega paid a jazz group. Next week introduced. A Darlene Tebbs who plays cliched
african american woman, emasculating Kendrick, with scathing insults about its inadequacy. As a black man. Like you guys, nigger you ain't here, you only need reminding me that were hurrying away means. Anyway, you ran ass, making air mighty no incohonees, knowing everybody from now on these dick ate some of compared this introduction to Otis Redding Carla Thomas's, duet performance of trap. The song features riding into
miss arguing over his merits. As a man and spoken interludes between the songs refrain the comparison is merited especially considering the alms overall influence of seventy spunk and saw music, though Hendricks woman is much more cryptic The four free barrage begins with tips, questioning why Kendrick is trying to make a big that he should be walking around like God's gift to earth these to stay,
its reference, a first verse of western SIRI, in which the young wrap herself confidently projected his vision of success, self empowerment and escape from the harsh realities of competent street. Like thing, it especially telling with the next lie. You didn't even by me, no outfit for the fourth. That we just met Uncle SAM, just a few minutes prior on the second verse of Wesley SIRI. The fourth is early referencing, the fourth of July America's Independence Day Uncle SAM Spurt. They are most patriotic event of the this information starts to clarify who exactly this barrage in character is one of Uncle SAM Figurative prostitutes and your sense american capitalism Incarnate and should continue sir demands for a new weave, brandname goods and abolish boyfriend. Otherwise, insulting Kendrick for being off Brandon Lame we realise the sentiments are similar to Uncle Samson Wesley SIRI, there's press IRAN Kendrick to fulfil a certain monetary perception of success to become a bother to win the girl, the woman,
extension of Uncle SAM, a representation of expectations and pressures of a social system that seeks to ultimately marginalize and pits talent of course Kendrick haven't it, he responds with exclamatory refrain that will become the basis of a sprawling free verse spoken word, slam, style, poetry, stream of consciousness. This dick eight free you looking at me like an intimacy like an ever made, is meeting your leftovers. Iran meet these dig eight free, even in captivity, raise my gives out. Frederick cleverly proposes for free to at once reference a history of black culture in America, as well as his personal experience with the music which he argues is an extension of the slave master of pimp, prostitute relationships developed from slavery. The verse is built on the refrain, this digging free a power exclamatory phrase, a rebellion against uncle salmon is prostitute, Kendrick Noses earth and refuses to be pimped, or at least that's what he thinks, because peace is written
stream of consciousness style. Complex ideas are packed in a very short phrases and move from one to the next and rapid fire. Most we're going to examine each section phrase by phrase afterward by word: an attempt to break down these complex ideas. They will take it over all look at the verse as a whole and draw some conclusions before we and our examination, I think it behoves us to listen to an excerpt of Gill Sky arose. The revolution will not be televised or nineteen seventy one like for free. If you're. The sprawling spoken word that is structured around the refrain. The revolution will not be televised
I hope you will not be able to go on about. You will be able to adjust our points against laughably annoying commercial because the revenue that meets all of the remedy- the revellers- let me run around about without the rebels and well that's my job viral angle, of complicated problems where the revenue of the revolution would like Otis ratings tramp. The influence seems consistent with their arms overall. Seventy spoken so inspiration and other very plausible inspiration for this piece is true. Pox life is a traffic jam as discover later, the record Tupac plays a major role and pepper, butterfly.
Life is a traffic jam, is an obscure jazz laden spoken word: peace from the soundtrack of the nineteen. Ninety seven movie gridlock, which start to baulk himself. The pieces performed in a night club and begins with Sandy Newt, inventing her frustrations with american society, with the line land of the free home of the slaved it's a line that could very easily find a home and kindred for free
and home again: slay the concept of six hours, twenty two minutes and three seconds love ensnared in this county, liner gridlock outside star, thereby three nine everybody rational, lies somewhere face. My guys, like me, just words and ninety report, follows with a half rap, have spoken verse about feeling trapped in a city and lifestyle, written advice and poverty
life is too short. Filterin open, not object to watch. My bank loss than the traffic in this tragic, don't wanna ask. So what can the smallest thing- and this don't make me feel this way? Life is entrap, examined unstuck when we can realise don't try to change my wings and listening to the gradual staying home once would increase by don't love parts of endangered down this. My life, you tell me if there is a trend. James stretching Moscow to solve three boys. Remember like the stranded in life is a tragic in life is threatened. Life is attracting the similarity between life. Is a traffic jam and for free is striking, and we know Kendrick admire this obscure peace as you. in another jazz influence track absolute out, you're for the two thousand eleven album section, eight
it's like the Hubble telescope, so I will not do that before generation. Why? Why lie horse, while surely influenced by Otis Redding Scott, her own into part just for free, is entirely Kendrick. Sounding performance is power? aggressive playful resentful and amazingly intricate. Let's take a lesson to the opening lines of contracts, worse than what dissect
This dick eight free. You look at me like an intimacy like an ever made, is meeting your leftovers. Iran meet this Dick eight free, even in captivity, raise my gives out, we celebrate, yellow Green is on I mean. Evidently, policy was badly aroused idea. This dig eight free, Frederick, together with quote you lookin at me like a data received almost like a never made ends meet eating your left, overs and Robbie receive many proof of purchase, references, slavery and the purchasing of humans for man. Labor, it also falls in line with the scenes of Wesley. Syria, Retainers are purchased pimped and made disposable That implies that, even though he's been fed Robbie leftovers, which was actual diet of many slaves key in the black commuted we're still able to make ends meet from. It was still able to make something of itself The calls to mind our discussion of the history of Compton, an episode one
government, aided suburban neighborhoods, were developed in a phenomenon known as white flight. Compton became a city of leftovers, coming The city of scraps Kendrick still found a way to make it out successfully. The next section continues in oh through more food base, wordplay quote living in captivity. He's my cap, salary, salary. Telling me green is all I need Evidently all I seen was spam and raw sardines after living in captivity, which could reference slavery, org in his cap, salary hisself worth has been raised, he's no longer willing to work for free salary, is cleverly flipped celery and draws contrast to this famine, raw sardines he's been fed throughout as upbringing he's encouraged to chase everything, green, greener food, greener pastors and, of course, green money, Let's take another, listen to those opening lines. They continue onto the middle
Son I mean evidently on ASEAN was badly aroused idea, this Dick eight free baby, fluidity mega baby namesakes. What message bans on twenty four may as well as I do that this debate is Dick free, what he knew, what he was gonna get applause. She has admitted that it was banned, genital the bell, rang ain't, free food and make past. Why didn't you suppose he gives me up not just get me up watching Llanos Authority about it. You know what you gonna do what we would have wanted. It might myself. Every day now dogs, thou shalt, this Dick free age, but a fascinating metaphysics manage Betsy Upmanship place. Don't waste has been more democracy, despair believe this. What I'll give you my sources tractors placed on the neighbour savings refusing to neighbours child after was telling us the actual financial means to purchase. Why was this allude to it?
friend in the early two, thousands in which parents name their children after expensive cars. Mercedes Lexus portion, others, The irony of naming your child after a car you can't afford, speaks to the lust created by capitalism and the elite. happiness gain through wealth for the second time, the references, forty acres in a meal. If you miss extensive discussion of this phenomenon in our previous episode. The phrase reference Is the broken promise of forty acres of land distributed to black slaves after the abolition of slavery? Hendrick contrast, forty acres in a mule with forty ounces in a pit bore to stereotypes. Get a living there. African Americans received instead of land in a mule. The ghetto has become an
their plantation that houses a new kind of slave one ruled by poverty and vice next, the word people becomes bullshit. Clearly, a common on the forty acres complex just explained. Bull is pulled from the bullshit leading to Matador Matador, perhaps a metaphor for Uncle SAM who taunts Kendrick arranging bull matador, becomes had the door knocking and introduces genitals best friend or women used here as a gateway to sex and lust pity. The fool who made the pretty and new prosper could be interpreted most obviously as pimping women for money, but perhaps best analyze, more generally, as exploitation of beauty of talent. Kendrick now finds himself watching porters and poverty lusting after the american dream, while Living in Compton, he then those that every dog has its day now. Doggie style shall help Kendrick. Now, we and successful, finds liberation and must finally able-
to obtain or consume the things he dreamt about, while raised in captivity. Kendrick picks apart the pimp, prostitute relationship, continuing the verse, with quote friendship based on business clearly a reference to his relationship with Uncle SAM. He then size, Uncle SAM piling pension money made off Hendricks hard work and again the hard work of his ancestors years before him. I might be stretching here, but the idea of Uncle SAM collecting pension funds, a metaphor for long term secure meant, could drop louder West, so SIRI second verse in which Uncle SAM tells Kendrick quote you make me live forever baby through both oppression of get. And the exploitation of the few who make it out the upper echelons of capitalism's beneficiaries become immortalized. Get me
red beers, its climax contracts, rapid fire stream of consciousness picks up pace. Whether ban follows day now darling stout Jowled, this Dick eight free bag immediately bangs manage, but that's the up as you please don't waste is being more. Democracy is being delayed with what I'll give you, what you sources or distortion report is more blushing, more divorced, wasn't blushing much less important to discuss because we want to fix the most pressure was twice choice: devastated did it was never got u badly. Jumping the gun image, which now Monday Frederick shouts, thought forgiveness, making clear he walks doping. reconciliation for uncle sands exploitive, since the next lie fuck. Your sources are distortion. Crowed referred to the American. Do media that sells an illusion of freedom, but is in reality distorting the truth or at minimum failing to cover the reality. Kendrick grew up in to entertain the double meaning throughout for
three. This line could also be referring to our education systems. Distortion of America's soiled history. One Domini by genocide, greed, exploitation and slavery of which was justified by, national, manifest destiny mentality. The next line, if you fuck it's more abortion, more divorce courts and Porsche, my check with less endorsement is especially abortion here is used as a metaphor for the destruction of potential rather than support talent and create a mutually beneficial relationship uncle the SAM just once a fuckin destroy his victims are left and bitter relationships and garnered wages. Of course, Uncle SAM divisive actions leave Kendrick dormant dusted doom disgusted. He then ass fuck, you think, is a more shit. Porcelain, pipes, pressure bust him twice clearly the pretty poor,
when plumbing of capitalism is a facade for a shitty system? If you feed the people too much shit, the pipes are gonna burst. Kendrick specifically says bust him twice, which could have been just a convenient way to rhyme pipe with twice but I cannot help thinking of the presidential elections that commonly end up being a choice between two crap candidates: sound the same old shit. This theory is backed by the verses next line, Choices devastated, meaning a choice between two evils no choice at all and they conclude Eliza for Free, Kendrick States, America, you bad bitch, confirming what we say directed all along the woman character or bad bitch from the tracks. Beginning is indeed America personified addressing her Kendrick says. I pick cotton in made you rich now my dick eight free, it's a blade summation of the verses entire thematic nicholas. Starck oppression contracts, rebellion against it, he knows is worth and is no longer willing to work for free, the american bad bitch closer. The track out.
threatening that she'll get her uncle SAM, her pimp to mess Kendrick up the last line. You ain't, no king, an insult that segwarides into the next track king could present was entrusted with devastating candidate. It was never going to be making this now Monday conclusions on the surface for free sees a maturing Kendrick combating Uncle SAM and societal pressures of success. He takes on good, fellows gangster mentality, a fuck. You pay me the wake Edric sees it uncle. Sam is indebted to Kendrick his ancestor built this country for free of slaves, and now a Kendrick is coming to collect his If to let his talents be exploited without compensation, but for all of us, looks good intent, rebellion, his desire are ultimately self serving rise to start and left him feeling empowered, but he still a caterpillar looking to consume and for free there is no mention of community
no mention of unifying society, so others too may find their way out of unfortunate situations. You'll later same himself, king on the arms next song, but his leave ship serves no clear purpose beyond his own self. A his own consumption with this in mind is important dimension. The club. Use of the word free on the songs refrain remember the time as for free with a question mark after free on it, First, the entire verse makes use of the phrase eight free in terms of value, Kendrick, demanding compensation for his talent but if you're not free, then it also means you have a price and, as the price uncle SAM can easily afford, in this way Uncle SAM gets, alas, laugh, Kendrick and glow Ali wants he still falling into the trappings of the american dream we can, so go yet. Another level deeper salmon Obviously in subconsciously, Kendrick is literally saying. Eight free, meaning, not free shackled, controlled Kendrick may feel empowered by standing up to the powers that be
but whether he knows it or not. He's not yet free from history free from his Compton upbringing or his own selfishness. This contrasting duality of a permit versus enslavement carries over into the arms next strike. King counter, what your thorough or next time on, dissect dissect is written produced by means of your joy. Dissect remember rate review on Itunes, it really helps for additional content, including a tip of butterfly album map, follow us at dissect, podcast on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, or visit dissect podcast dot com, the music by bureaucratic forebore visit, bureaucratic dot, band camp dot, com.