The American rapper and songwriter Kendrick Lamar has become the first non-classical or jazz musician to win the prestigious Pulitzer Prize for music. The annual award is given to musicians who have created a "distinguished musical composition". Lamar won it for his album "DAMN". The 30-year-old Lamar wrote and rapped about the reality of life as a black man in the USA. He wrote songs like "Alright" and "The Blacker the Berry". These have become very well known since the police shootings of many black people in America. The Pulitzer board said the album was a "virtuosic song collection" that captured "the modern African-American life". Mr Lamar has not yet commented on his award.
The Pulitzer Prize is an award for achievements in journalism, literature, and musical composition. It started in 1917 to honour news reporting. The first prize for musical composition was awarded in 1943. Kendrick Lamar is the first rapper to win the award and the most commercially successful musician to receive it. The prize is usually given to classical musicians. The Pulitzer committee said: "We are very proud of this selection. It means that...the best work was awarded a Pulitzer Prize." It added: "It shines a light on hip-hop in a completely different way." Sky News said: "Lamar has won...for his deep lyrical content...and his profound mix of hip hop, spoken word, jazz, soul, funk, poetry and African sounds."