Kendrick Lamar Duckworth (born June 17, 1987), known professionally as Kendrick Lamar, is an American rapper and songwriter. He embarked on his musical career as a teenager under the stage name K-Dot, releasing a mixtape that garnered local attention and led to his signing with indie record label Top Dawg Entertainment (TDE). He began to gain major recognition in 2010, after his first retail release, Overly Dedicated. The following year, Lamar independently released his first studio album, Section.80, which included his debut single, “HiiiPoWeR”. By that time, he had amassed a large Internet following and collaborated with several prominent artists in the hip hop industry, including The Game, Snoop Dogg, Busta Rhymes, and Lil Wayne.