Rapper Kendrick Lamar celebrated July 4th by releasing the music video for the diss track, “Not Like Us.” 

The 17-time Grammy-winning rapper garnered over 15 million views in less than 24 hours. 

The track, aimed at Drake, is part of an ongoing battle over the crown of “Greatest Rapper Alive.”

The two rappers collaborated more than a decade ago but have grown apart since. 

In the music video, Kendrick seems to take even more jabs at Drake through cameos and strategically choreographed scenes. 

Who is Tommy the Clown?

Appearances include his very low-profile partner, director Dave Free, Toronto Raptors star Demar Derozan, and Tommy the Clown. 

Kendrick, branded as the “master of storytelling,” and one of the greatest lyricists of our time, uses the music video to debunk rumors and attacks from Drake. 

At the beginning of the video, a clown (Tommy the Clown) asks “What’s the password?” to which Kendrick responds “I see dead people.”

Tommy the Clown is a popular Detroit dancer best known for creating the style “clowning” in the 1990s, which later evolved into krumping. 

The response makes reference to the popular horror film,”The Sixth Sense” and the fact that Drake lost the beef between the two. 

The owl in the cage

Owls were a recurring theme in the music video from the beginning to the end.

The owl makes reference to Drake’s music label OVO Sound, whose logo is an owl. 

In the video, the pulitzer-prize winning rapper is seen hitting an owl-shaped piñata with a stick.

Towards the end of the video, Kendrick paces around an owl that is visibly trapped inside a cage.

Kendrick has a stare-down with the owl before walking away from it. 

The imagery is likely a nod to the fact that Kendrick believes Drake is an industry plant who does whatever it takes for attention without actually being “a part of the culture.”

Dave Free, Kendrick fallout accusations

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – MAY 15: Dave Free speaks onstage during the 27th Annual Webby Awards on May 15, 2023 in New York City. (Photo by Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images for The Webby Awards)

In the music directed by Dave Free and Kendrick Lamar, Free makes several appearances. 

In Drake’s diss, “Family Matters,” he hints that Dave Free (Kendrick’s lifelong friend), secretly fathered one of Lamar’s children. 

In the “Not Like Us” video it ends with the credits: “Directed by Dave Free and Kendrick Lamar,” debunking rumors that the childhood friends has any tension between one another. 

But in the war of words between music industry titans Kendrick Lamar and Drake, the jabs are below the belt, and there is no limit to the number of rounds. Plus, all the sparring is being played out on social media with lightning speed.

Who is Kendrick Lamar’s wife?

Drake also took stabs at Kendrick’s partner Whitney Alford, suggesting that Lamar was abusive towards her.

In the “Not Like Us” video, she is seen joyously dancing around the living room with their two children, implying that the two were a happy family. 

Alford is known for living a very private life along with his daughter, Uzi, and their son, Enoch.

The two attended Centennial High School in their hometown of Compton, California, and have been together since they were teens. 

The two got engaged in 2015. 

Kendrick vs Drake: Who won?

In one corner there’s Kendrick, who’s often been thought of as an intellectual rapper with the ability to use historical and cultural references within a triple and even quadruple entendre. 

On the other hand, there’s Drake, who has made hits across multiple music genres, not to mention 13 number-one albums of course.  

Through the ongoing beef, both artists have managed to maintain their popularity and status as some of the greatest this generation has ever seen. 

It’s safe to say that Kendrick’s “Not Like Us,” is and will remain one of the most popular songs of the summer. 

In short, the debate remains ongoing.

Watch the full “Not Like Us”. 

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