You gotta pay homage in order to get paid
You gotta pay attention in order to pay dues

from Kendrick Lamar – The Heart Pt. 1 Lyrics on Rap Genius

Meaning

Kendrick is basically pointing out that you need to pay respect to those before you and study (pay attention) to the past in order to be successful in the present and future. Acknowledge those who inspired you. Kdot studied the game and the greats and has now become one of them. You must be a student of the craft if you want to master it and become successful.

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