Kendrick Lamar Details Nas' "Illmatic" Impact

Kendrick Lamar says some have compared his work with Nas'.

"We share somewhat of a similar story just being from a community and not being sucked in by what's going on around you," he says in an interview with Google Play. "He's from the projects. I'm from Compton. I'm sure he's seen a lot and done a lot. You hear in my music what's surrounded me and just to be able to elevate your mind alittle bit further passed that through writing is bigger than one song. In order to do that and craft that, it's on another plane and I wouldn't have been able to do that if it wasn't for that album, truthfully.

"Just to know some type of comparison is there, I'm not saying I'm like Nas or like Jay, I want to be Kendrick Lamar, but to just know that I'm on the right plane as far as my subject matter and what he's talking about and what he's done with his career, it makes me a little more confident in what I'm doing," Kendrick Lamar adds.

In January 2013, Nas celebrated Kendrick Lamar's good kid, m.A.A.d city. "No disrespect to nobody else in rap music, but Kendrick Lamar," he said at the time. "I’m really happy about his record. I needed that. His record reaches you. It gives you hope."

When Kendrick Lamar heard about Nas' praise, he discussed his admiration for the Queens, New York emcee.

"That's crazy, I didn't hear that," Lamar said. "That's amazing, just off the fact that it's Nas. You can hear the influence [of him] on my storytelling. For somebody who's been a lead player in this game for so many years, a veteran as far as longevity and skill, that's an accomplishment just on words alone."