Baby Keem, a rising Las Vegas rapper, is about to release a new single, which will include his cousin Kendrick Lamar, much to the joy of many of his fans. On social media, Keem shared the cover for “Family Ties,” which features a redacted family photo with only his and Kendrick’s faces visible, as well as the release date, Thursday, August 26 at 9 p.m. PT (that’s Friday at midnight for you East Coasters), igniting a frenzy of anticipation for the album’s eventual release.
The cover appears to demonstrate that Keem shares Kendrick’s fondness for exploiting old family photos in promotional materials; Kendrick famously used a newborn photo of his own on the cover of his major-label debut album, Good Kid, MAAD City, editing his other family members in a similar manner. Not only does this highlight Kendrick’s guest participation on Keem’s single, but it also indirectly anoints the younger rapper as Kendrick’s heir apparent, implying that his impact on the rap game will be just as significant (Keem is represented by Kendrick’s agency, PgLang).
Of course, that’s a lot of strain to place on a 20-year-old; after all, big cuz has a Pulitzer Prize, a wall of trophies, and a shelf full of statues to his name. Keem, on the other hand, is off to a good start, with a modest but expanding catalog of well-received singles including “No Sense,” “Durag Activity,” and an as-yet-unreleased collaboration with Kanye West. Meanwhile, the new song appears to be the start of Kendrick’s future album, which will be his final under Top Dawg Entertainment’s deal.