In September 2013, when Kendrick Lamar reached for the throne, proclaiming himself the King of Both Coasts on "Control," most discussions that followed were about the rappers he took down in the process. But there was just as much to dissect fashion-wise in the lines “And I ain’t rocking no more designer s--t/ White T’s and Nike Cortez, this is red Corvettes anonymous.” Fast forward a year and Kendrick is making good on his reformed style vow, though, he's ditched the Nike Cortez to partner with Reebok.
Fittingly for their first collaboration, Kendrick went with another freestyle. This time he's delivering it in a three-and-half minute film for the brand directed by Anthony Mandler, who’s worked on music videos for Rihanna and Jay Z, the first artist to get a signature shoe from Reebok, who was later followed by G-Unit, Swizz Beatz, Pharrell, Lupe Fiasco, and Kid Cudi.
In the video, Kendrick debuts the new Ventilator OG sneaker, a white kick with grey trim and splashes of green and pink, created to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Ventilator line. Kendrick shows off the shoe around his old stomping grounds, Compton, and even his old high school.
"Reebok has a history of helping kids in the community realize their potential is limitless," Lamar said in a statement. "I saw what the brand was doing, and I wanted to be a part of it and make it even stronger. It's as simple as that. Kids that listen to my music are looking for inspiration. It's important that I continue that message in anything I represent.”
Fingers crossed Kendrick and Reebok’s collaboration also brings a new pair of kicks designed by the rapper. After all, what’s a crown without a custom pair of shoes to go with it?