In a new video celebrating the Reebok Classic and his collaboration with the shoe company, Kendrick opens up about his classic sound and style, explaining what the word means to him.

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“When you think about rhymes and style, you always want a classic feel,” the Compton MC says, as his Untitled Unmastered cut “untitled 07” plays. “So my first introduction to a classic shoe was the moment I stepped in school and I said to myself, ‘I want to put something down on paper.’ I started writing. Everybody in the classroom was wearing Reebok Classics.”

The Compton emcee freestyles during the solemn ad, which makes mention of the young age–13–at which Kendrick first began writing and working at what would eventually become his rather lucrative profession. The cinematic nature of the video clip can be attributed to contributions from marquee director NABIL (Kanye West, James Blake), who took on co-directing duties for the project.

“Hip-hop was more than just the music; it was part of culture, it was part of having style, it was part of a whole graffiti and arts,” he adds. “It was only right that I wore the Reebok Classics then. I still remain that classic guy, and that’s the reason why I’m wearing the shoes now.”

Watch the artsy video below

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