Compton, California's Kendrick Lamar was recently joined on stage by Fresno, California's Fashawn while performing in Bohemia, Czech Republic's Hip Hop Kemp festival. Fashawn, who gained critical acclaim for his 2009 debut album, Boy Meets World, was reportedly asked to come on stage by Lamar to perform an impromptu freestyle. Following the California connection in the Czech Republic, Fashawn spoke about what it was like to hit the stage with Lamar.
"After my set was done at Hip Hop Kemp, [Kendrick] saw me on the side of the stage checking his set and he instantly threw up the West Coast [W sign]," Fashawn said in an exclusive statement to HipHopDX. "I took it as a sign of unity and saluted him right back. So then during his freestyle section of 'm.A.A.d. city,' he unexpectedly invited me on stage to rhyme with him. It's not everyday that the most relevant rapper in the world invites you to share the stage with him, so I felt that was the ultimate sign of respect after all that's been done and said since 'Control' dropped."
"Control" has caused many rappers to react with disses and responses, including tracks by Lupe Fiasco, Cassidy, Joe Budden and Joey Bada$$. Although Fashawn has not released a response, he did address how the track made him feel.
"After the 'Control' verse, every emcee and critic alike had to feel some type of way and wasn't hesitant to speak up or against the matter," Fashawn said. "I certainly felt a certain kind of way, but not the same as everyone else, it seems. I felt proud. I felt good because real emcees are shining and I know what I bring to Hip Hop is right up there with what Kendrick [brings], both young Cali kids who love to rap and respect and honor the greats that did it before us. No gimmicks or none of that shit. Just flat out good music and guys who have put out albums that'll be heard decades from now. His sold a million, mine 40,000, but whoever heard them got every dollar's worth, 'cause the message is bigger then just writing raps."
Their performance can be viewed below, via YouTube user TuelvBeats.
This isn't the first time Fashawn and Lamar have shared the stage. The two also performed together at last year's Fresno Fair in California.
Fashawn is currently finishing up his next album, The Ecology.