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Hit-Boy reveals truth about the beat for Kendrick Lamar’s ‘Backseat Freestyle’




We all know and love Kendrick Lamar’s ‘Backseat Freestyle’ as one of his most unique and fun tracks to date.  It turns out, Hit-Boy made this beat for a very different musical use.

Hit-Boy had actually given the beat to Ciara already, who was using it for an R&B track she titled ‘Hit-Boy.’  Naturally, the gifted producer was happy with the initial use, given the generous name drop in the title.  It’s very crazy to picture this beat being used for an R&B song instead of a hard rap.  Whether he says so or not, it looks like Hit-Boy subconsciously knew it as well.

Hit-Boy and Kendrick connected in Vegas to record for ‘good kid, m.A.A.d city.’  They belted out some tracks, but none of them made the final album.  Kendrick, unsatisfied, returned to Hit-Boy, saying, ‘I need some more beats.’  With that, the banging and clanging beat became what we now know as ‘Backseat Freestyle.’

Having given Ciara the beat, Hit-Boy had to choose.  After considering just how hard Kendrick “was spazzing for real on this shit,” he went and made the right choice.  While we’re sure Ciara’s recording was very solid, there’s no way it would have been as monumental as Kendrick’s recording.

Symptoms of King’s Disease

Shoutout to Hit-Boy for putting the interest of music over the glory of his own name drop.  This is among many reasons that he’s one of the best producers working right now.  He’s been owning the game for over a decade now.  He kickstarted with ‘Ni**as In Paris,’ making ‘Sicko Mode’ and ‘1Train’ along the way, and most recently, producing all of Nas’ Grammy-winning album, ‘King’s Disease.’  Truly one of the modern greats.


That’s definitely a fun piece of rap history right there.  Give ‘Backseat Freestyle’ a listen right here and spin it back when you’re done; you know you want to!




Written by Jason Heilbronner

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