Weezy F. Baby… and don’t forget the baby!
Lil Wayne — born Dwayne Michael Carter Jr. — has made enormous contributions to hip-hop and is one of the most influential rappers of his generation. Wayne started off his career signed to Cash Money Records by rapper Birdman. At the time of his signing, he was one the youngest on the label. He dropped his solo album Tha Block Is Hot in 1999 but created himself a following after he launched the first installment of Tha Carter series in 2004. However, it wasn’t until the third installment, Tha Carter III, which was released in 2008, that he really took off and became a household name. The New Orleans native sold one million copies of the album in its first week and won Best Rap Album at the 51st Annual Grammy Awards. The album housed singles “A Milli,” “Lollipop,” and “Got Money.” The rapper received his first No. 1 spot on the Billboard Hot 100 with “Lollipop.” In 2020, Wayne surpassed Elvis Presley with the most Top 40 hits. He is now tied for that spot with Taylor Swift with 86 top 40 hits for each artist. The artist leading the pack is Drake with 158 who was discovered by Wayne in 2007. Lil Wayne founded the record label Young Money Entertainment, an imprint of Cash Money Records, which has released No. 1 albums by rap artists such as Drake and Nicki Minaj.
Weezy spoke to Hypebeast back in March about his trailblazing career in hip-hop:
“First of all, you have to be embracing,” he explained. “You can’t be the person that’s saying I don’t like the new music. You gotta love it. Learn it, like it and love it started you better understand that’s music. That’s not a certain type of music, that’s music.”
“Therefore you have to embrace that,” he further shared. “You gotta go get you a vocal coach. Rest in peace, Ms. Betty Wright. Then you got a Drake. He’s music. My goal now, if you want to be the ultimate artist, that’s what I want to be. In sports, we like to call them the Swiss Army Knife.”
Take a look at 10 of Lil Wayne’s best songs ranked below: