Among the massively impressive list of collaborators on Kendrick Lamar's To Pimp a Butterfly, released Monday — like Rock and Roll Hall of Famer George Clinton, bassist Thundercat, Flying Lotus as producer on the record's opening track, jazz pianist Robert Glasper, MC Rapsody, Snoop Dogg, just to name a few — one has strong Philly roots.
Neo-soul singer Bilal, who made a breakthrough during the early 2000s R&B-funk fusion movement, lends his vocals to a few tracks on the record including "Institutionalized" and "These Walls."
The Philadelphia-born, New York City-based artist, who's also collaborated with The Roots, Common, Beyonce and Kimbra, credits frequenting jazz clubs in Philly with his father and performing at the Blue Moon Café in his early teens as his first forays into music, according to an interview with East Bay Express.
While details about the album and its release came as a bit of a surprise, Bilal's involvement (along with that of Thundercat and Anna Wise) was revealed in December when a still-untitled and unreleased song debuted on The Colbert Report.
To Pimp a Butterfly is available for purchase and to stream.