Rising Las Vegas rapper Baby Keem has a new single on the way, and to many of his fans’ delight, it will feature his cousin Kendrick Lamar. Keem shared the cover for “Family Ties,” which features a redacted family photo that leaves only his and Kendrick’s faces unobscured, as well as the release date, Thursday, August 26 at 9 PM PT (that’s Friday at midnight for you East Coasters), on social media, sparking a frenzy of excitement for its eventual release.
The cover seemingly shows that Keem shares Kendrick’s affection for using old family flicks in his promotional materials; Kendrick famously employed a baby photo of his own on the cover of his major-label debut album, Good Kid, MAAD City, using a similar technique of censoring his other family members. Not only does this highlight Kendrick’s appearance as a guest artist on Keem’s track but it also subtly anoints the younger rapper as Kendrick’s heir apparent, suggesting that his impact on the rap game will be just as huge (Keem is associated with Kendrick’s agency PgLang).
Of course, that’s a lot of pressure to put on the 20-year-old; after all, big cuz has a Pulitzer Prize to his name in addition to a wall full of plaques and a shelf covered in statuary. Keem is off to a decent start, though, with a small but growing collection of well-received bangers to his name including “No Sense,” “Durag Activity,” and an as-yet-unreleased collaboration with Kanye West. Meanwhile, the new song also seemingly kicks off the wait for Kendrick’s upcoming album, his last one under contract with Top Dawg Entertainment.