How Much A Dollar Cost

Album: To Pimp A Butterfly (2015)
Play Video


  • Kendrick Lamar details here an unexpected encounter with The Almighty. After refusing to give a dollar to a homeless man (believing he will spend it on crack), the man reveals Himself to K-Dot to be God.

    Lamar told MTV News this was a true story. "These are moments in my life deeper than just handing somebody a dollar," he said. "These are actually moments of integrity, actually being able to talk to somebody. Me talking to him was simply a thank you from God. And I felt God speaking through him to get at me."
  • James Fauntleroy croons the hook. Faunteloy is best known for his work as a songwriter, having co-written hit singles for Jordin Sparks "No Air" and Ciara ("Love Sex Magic") as well as much of Justin Timberlake's The 20/20 Experience.
  • Ronald Isley of the Isley Brothers croons the reflective outro. To Pimp a Butterfly's lead single "I" also involved the Isley Brothers, incorporating a sample from their 1973 hit "That Lady."
  • According to a list of the first family's best pop culture picks in 2015, this was Barack Obama's favorite song of the year. Michelle Obama chose Bruno Mars and Mark Ronson's "Uptown Funk."
  • Asked by a reporter what the song's deeper meaning is, Lamar replied: "Help as many people as you can, man, if you want to live forever."


Be the first to comment...

Editor's Picks

Roger McGuinn of The Byrds

Roger McGuinn of The ByrdsSongwriter Interviews

Roger reveals the songwriting formula Clive Davis told him, and if "Eight Miles High" is really about drugs.

Dean Pitchford

Dean PitchfordSongwriter Interviews

Dean wrote the screenplay and lyrics to all the songs in Footloose. His other hits include "Fame" and "All The Man That I Need."

Judas Priest

Judas PriestSongwriter Interviews

Rob Halford, Richie Faulkner and Glenn Tipton talk twin guitar harmonies and explain how they create songs in Judas Priest.

Julian Lennon

Julian LennonSongwriter Interviews

Julian tells the stories behind his hits "Valotte" and "Too Late for Goodbyes," and fills us in on his many non-musical pursuits. Also: what MTV meant to his career.

Eric Clapton

Eric ClaptonFact or Fiction

Did Eric Clapton really write "Cocaine" while on cocaine? This question and more in the Clapton edition of Fact or Fiction.

Chris Robinson of The Black Crowes

Chris Robinson of The Black CrowesSongwriter Interviews

"Great songwriters don't necessarily have hit songs," says Chris. He's written a bunch, but his fans are more interested in the intricate jams.