Kendrick Lamar Will Be Stephen Colbert’s First “Late Show” Musical Guest

Lamar was also the last musical guest on The Colbert Report.

The bag lunches have been nice, but we’re ready to get serious about our relationship with Stephen Colbert and his Late Show. Unfortunately, we still have a few more weeks to go until the show’s September 8 premiere, and now he’s leaked some news that’ll make the waiting that much harder: Colbert’s first musical guest will be Kendrick Lamar. As Variety reports, the reveal came at the Television Critics Association press tour on Monday.

In addition to being two of the most talked-about entertainers in the world right now, the partnership makes sense. For one, Lamar was Colbert’s last musical guest on The Colbert Report. But the commonalities go beyond the schedule book. Both Lamar and Colbert use popular art forms to thoughtfully engage with questions of justice, religion, and morality, and both are able to do so without alienating people who disagree with their conclusions.

Colbert also offered a few more details on his Late Show reboot. George Clooney (whom Colbert says “is a brilliant actor and a great director and he cares about the world”) will also appear on the show’s first episode, and he’s had the Ed Sullivan Theater restored to its original 1920s architecture. As was previously revealed, he’ll also be retiring the “Stephen Colbert” character he played on The Colbert Report: “I’m looking forward to being sincerely interested in what [my guests] have to say without having to translate it through an idiot’s mouth,” he said.

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