Swimming Pools (Drank)

Kendrick Lamar song

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"Swimming Pools (Drank)"
In this single cover, an empty room with a man sitting on a chair with a bottle of liquor on the floor. A sign on the bottom left reads "PARENTAL ADVISORY EXPLICIT CONTENT" in a two bars of black and a bar of white in one rectangle.
Single by Kendrick Lamar
from the album Good Kid, M.A.A.D City
B-side"Remixes" (12")
ReleasedJuly 31, 2012 (2012-07-31)
  • 4:07 (single version)
  • 5:13 (extended version)
Kendrick Lamar singles chronology
"The Recipe"
"Swimming Pools (Drank)"
"Fuckin' Problems"
Music video
"Swimming Pools (Drank)" on YouTube
Audio sample
A sample of the song, the line before the chorus says Kendrick takes a few sips then a very inebriated man says he needs to "Get a swimming pool full of liquor and dive in it".

"Swimming Pools (Drank)" is a song by American rapper Kendrick Lamar. It was released on July 31, 2012 as the lead single (second overall) from his major-label debut studio album Good Kid, M.A.A.D City (2012), by Top Dawg, Aftermath and Interscope. The song was written by Lamar and Tyler "T-Minus" Williams, the latter of whom also produced the song. The song, mixed by Dr. Dre and Top Dawg's engineer Derek "MixedByAli" Ali, propelled Lamar to mainstream popularity. The song peaked at number 17 on the US Billboard Hot 100, in its thirteenth week of charting, after gradually climbing up the chart. It debuted on the Hot 100 at number 100 and progressed from number 55 and 32 to its peak. "Swimming Pools (Drank)" also serves as Lamar's first entry on the UK Singles Chart, where it debuted at number 63.

A music video was released to accompany the song in August 2012. It was featured in the 2013 game Saints Row IV, the 2014 re-release of the game Grand Theft Auto V, and on a 2013 episode of Grey's Anatomy. On January 26, 2013, Lamar performed the song on Saturday Night Live, as well as his third single "Poetic Justice".[1] The music video was nominated for Best Male Video and Best Hip-Hop Video at the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards. The song was later nominated for Best Rap Performance at the 56th Annual Grammy Awards.


The single is an introspective regarding Lamar's family and social life, alcoholism, and the peer pressure which accompanies it amongst his friends. In the first verse, he remembers his grandfather's drinking and resulting death,[2] and the reasons that led Lamar himself to drinking.[3] The desire from the perspective of his peers, is the social pressure pressed upon him to "get a swimming pool full of liquor" and then "dive in it". At the second verse, Lamar, now drunk, is conversing with his own subconscious, which is attempting to warn him of "drown[ing] in some poison". By the final verse of the song, Lamar is accepting his fate that he believes he will "probably sleep and never ever wake up".

The extended album version of the track features an interlude and a skit that expands on the concept story of the album. Now drunk and eager to impress his peers, he thinks once more of the album's love interest, Sherane, before detailing a shoot-out between Lamar's friends and their gang rivals, in which his friend's brother is shot and killed. "Swimming Pools (Drank)" is the album's lead single and the follow-up to Lamar's debut single "The Recipe".

Critical reception

The song garnered acclaim from music critics upon its release. Rolling Stone ranked the song the 34th best of 2012.[4] XXL named it one of the top five hip hop songs of 2012.[5]

Live performances

Lamar performed "Swimming Pools (Drank)" at every show on The Damn Tour.[6]

Chart performance

In its first week of release, the song debuted at number 100 on the Billboard Hot 100 and remained within the chart for another week, but two weeks, later re-entered the Hot 100 and climbed up each week, progressing from the top 90 to number 81, 71 and 61. In its tenth week, "Swimming Pools (Drank)" climbed up to number 55 and the following week, entered the top 40 of the Hot 100 at number 32, moving up to 25 and peaking at number 17. On the UK Singles Chart, the song entered at number 63, remaining in the top 100 for one week. The song is Lamar's third highest-charting solo single on the Billboard Hot 100 behind "DNA." which debuted and peaked at number four and "HUMBLE." which debuted at number two and peaked at number one (though his features on "Fuckin' Problems" and "Bad Blood" reached the top 10 in the United States) and on the UK Singles Chart.[7]

Music video

The music video, directed by Jerome D, premiered August 3, 2012 on 106 & Park. A review by the magazine Rolling Stone shared a summary of the video stating: "In his new video for 'Swimming Pools (Drank),' Kendrick Lamar defies gravity, floating and tumbling in suspended space as liquor bottles fly upwards and smash into the ceiling. The rapper gets introspective on a woozy beat, considering the highs and lows of alcohol consumption and the sense of confidence it bestows upon the drinker. Lamar spends most of the video rapping alone, but color-filtered shots of a booze-soaked rager poke through the more contemplative scenes."

Sample used

Track listing

Digital single
1."Swimming Pools (Drank)"T-Minus4:07
good kid, m.A.A.d city
9."Swimming Pools (Drank)" (Extended Version)
  • Kendrick Lamar
  • Nikhil Seetharam
  • Tyler Williams
good kid, m.A.A.d city (deluxe edition)
17."Swimming Pools (Drank)" (Main Version)
  • Kendrick Lamar
  • Nikhil Seetharam
  • Tyler Williams
19."Swimming Pools (Drank)" (Black Hippy Remix)T-Minus5:14


The official remix featuring his Black Hippy cohorts – Ab-Soul, Jay Rock and Schoolboy Q, along with artists Bruno Mars, Travis Scott, T.I., 2 Chainz and Ayo & Teo was included as a bonus track on the Target deluxe edition of Good Kid, M.A.A.D City.[9] On March 14, 2013, producer Dev Hynes uploaded a reinterpreted rendition of the track by English R&B group, Mutya Keisha Siobhan to his official SoundCloud page. The track, entitled "Lay Down in Swimming Pools", features an interpolation of the original Lamar song. Hynes later commented saying: "Just finished recording new music with Mutya, Keisha and Siobhan, and the girls felt like having a bit of fun at the end of the last session – enjoy!!". Lloyd and August Alsina have also released a remix of the song.[10]



Region Certification Certified units/sales
Denmark (IFPI Danmark)[31] Platinum 90,000double-dagger
Germany (BVMI)[32] Gold 150,000double-dagger
United Kingdom (BPI)[33] Platinum 600,000double-dagger
United States (RIAA)[34] 4× Platinum 4,000,000double-dagger

double-dagger Sales+streaming figures based on certification alone.

Release history

Country Date Format Label Ref.
United States July 31, 2012 Digital download [35]
United Kingdom September 30, 2012


  1. ^ "Kendrick Lamar Performs On Saturday Night Live (Video)". 2DopeBoyz. Retrieved 27 January 2013.
  2. ^ Lamar, Kendrick (3 October 2012). "My Favorite Things, Part II". RapGenius. Retrieved 14 January 2013. ...playing on the word swimming pool. him drowning in a pool of liquor in Chicago
  3. ^ Lamar, Kendrick (5 August 2012). "My Favorite Things, Part II". RapGenius. Retrieved 14 January 2013. This song is about me reminiscing about my years a kid witnessing a housing that indulged adults in alcohol. So much alcohol that it could fill a swimming pool.
  4. ^ "Kendrick Lamar, 'Swimming Pools (Drank)'". Rolling Stone. 5 December 2012.
  5. ^ "XXL Lists The Best Hip-Hop Songs And Albums Of The Last 40 Years – XXL Issue 152". XXL Mag.
  6. ^ Masley, Ed (July 13, 2017). "Kendrick Lamar launches DAMN. Tour in Glendale with triumphant one-man show of force". AZ Central. Retrieved October 30, 2017.
  7. ^ "Kendrick Lamar - Swimming Pools (Drank) on acharts.us". acharts.us. Retrieved 2012-08-21.
  8. ^ "BTS y diez letras que demuestran por qué son un grupo pop como pocos | LUCES". El Comercio Perú (in Spanish). April 11, 2019. Retrieved February 22, 2022.
  9. ^ HipHopDX (20 December 2012). "The Most Important Freestyles Of 2012". HipHopDX.
  10. ^ Lewis Corner (14 March 2013). "Mutya Keisha Siobhan release Kendrick Lamar cover - listen". Digital Spy.
  11. ^ [1]
  12. ^ "Kendrick Lamar – Swimming Pools (Drank)" (in Dutch). Ultratip.
  13. ^ "Kendrick Lamar – Swimming Pools (Drank)" (in French). Ultratip.
  14. ^ "Kendrick Lamar Chart History (Canadian Hot 100)". Billboard.
  15. ^ "Kendrick Lamar – Swimming Pools (Drank)" (in French). Les classement single.
  16. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  17. ^ "Official R&B Singles Chart Top 40". Official Charts Company.
  18. ^ "Kendrick Lamar Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard.
  19. ^ "Kendrick Lamar Chart History (Adult R&B Songs)". Billboard.
  20. ^ "Kendrick Lamar Chart History (Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs)". Billboard.
  21. ^ "Kendrick Lamar Chart History (Hot Rap Songs)". Billboard.
  22. ^ "Kendrick Lamar Chart History (Rhythmic)". Billboard.
  23. ^ "R&B/Hip-Hop Songs - 2012 Year End Charts". Billboard.com. Retrieved 2012-12-17.
  24. ^ "Rap Songs - 2012 Year End Charts". Billboard.com. Retrieved 2012-12-17.
  25. ^ "80-61 Hottest 100 - 2012 triple j". abc.net.au. 26 January 2013. Retrieved 2013-01-27.
  26. ^ "Best of 2013 - Hot 100 Songs". Prometheus Global Media. 2 January 2013. Retrieved December 13, 2013.
  27. ^ "2013 Year End Charts — R&B/Hip-Hop Songs". Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved December 13, 2013.
  28. ^ "2013 Year End Charts — Rap Songs". Prometheus Global Media. 13 December 2013. Retrieved December 13, 2013.
  29. ^ "Rhythmic Songs – Year-End 2013". Billboard. 9 December 2014. Retrieved October 1, 2019.
  30. ^ "Top AFP - Audiogest - Top 3000 Singles + EPs Digitais" (PDF) (in Portuguese). Associação Fonográfica Portuguesa. Retrieved August 14, 2020.
  31. ^ "Danish single certifications – Kendrick Lamar – Swimming Pools(Drank)". IFPI Danmark. Retrieved February 27, 2019.
  32. ^ "Gold-/Platin-Datenbank (Kendrick Lamar; 'Swimming Pools (Drank)')" (in German). Bundesverband Musikindustrie. Retrieved May 1, 2018.
  33. ^ "British single certifications – Kendrick Lamar – Swimming Pools (Drank)". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved January 23, 2020.
  34. ^ "American single certifications – Kendrick Lamar – Swimming Pools (Drank)". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved June 13, 2018.
  35. ^ iTunes.com. Retrieved July 31, 2012.

External links

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