At the end of the classic story of the album good kid, m.A.A.d city brings upon an amazing song that shows the greatness of the pen of Kendrick Lamar. The song shows three different perspectives one from a brother of one of Kendrick’s friends, the sister of Keisha from Section.80, and Lamar owns perspective in response to Dave’s brother and Keisha’s sister.
Dave’s brother calls Kendrick the morning after his brother Dave is killed by gunshots. Dave’s brother spills all his pain, dreams, & truth for Kendrick to hear on the other side of the phone. Dave’s brother felt like he needed to call Kendrick “just in case I’m not here tomorrow.” He feels like his mind is “really distorted” and he “finds nothing but trouble” in his life due to his upbringing and gang lifestyle. Although he feels hopeless he feels “fortunate” that Kendrick “believes in a dream” of rapping. “This orphanage we call a ghetto is quite a routine. And last night was just another distraction or a reaction. Of what we consider madness.” Dave’s brother explains that the neighborhood he & Kendrick adopted them as orphans and Dave dying was a reaction of living in the orphanage. Dave’s brother continues to be truthful to Lamar by saying that “it’s a trip how we trip off of colors” & “dumb people” like him will “never prosper.” He feels trapped because “this piru shit been in me forever” & begs Kendrick to tell his story when he becomes famous. “And if I die before your album drop I hope (gunshots).” It’s revealed that Dave’s brother dies & he couldn’t escape the orphanage that Lamar was able to make it out of.
Keisha’s sister has a negative reaction to Kendrick telling Keisha’s story on his previous project, Section.80. She thought Lamar was “putting her on blast & shit” and judging her past of prostitution. Keisha’s sister explains that her sister past is “completely her future” and she “needs that 40 dollars” from her customers & will do whatever it takes to get it. Keisha’s sister says that she’s another girl “damaged by the system” & her lifestyle of postitution is due to childhood “foster homes.” She feels that if she was raised in an environment that “showed women how to be women” she would be in a better place. She asks Lamar what point was he trying “to gain” by telling the story of her sister. “And if you have an album date just make sure I’m not in the song”, she says she will “never fade away.” Towards the end of the verse Lamar fades away showing that Keisha’s sister is fading away.
In the third & final verse of the song, Lamar raps a verse of self reflection, and a response to both Dave’s brother & Keisha’s sister. “And you’re right your brother was a brother to me. And your sister’s situation was the one that pulled in a direction to speak on something that’s realer than the tv screen.” Lamar explains to Dave’s brother that Dave was like a brother to him & he felt he needed to tell Keisha’s story because it was so real. Kendrick says that he “wasn’t trying to offend” anyone by telling Keisha’s story & that it “needed to be told.” Kendrick felt that if he didn’t tell the story of Keisha it would help the continue the cycle that Keisha & her sister were caught in. At the end of the song Lamar asks his listeners & people alike him if they will sing about him, like Kendrick does with the stories in his songs & albums.