With the release of Lil Wayne's new album, we're going to hear a lot of the same shit that we always hear about Lil Wayne. Instead of joining that toxic merry-go-round of a discussion, let's focus in on something we can all agree on: Mixtape Weezy.
Wayne had a run in music that was unlike anything hip-hop has ever seen. He was claiming to be the best rapper alive, and a string of mixtapes had a lot of people convinced. It's a strange kind of success, because these weren't radio hits, they weren't money-makers that were filling the Young Money bank accounts, and they certainly weren't the kind of catchy, pop-leaning circus acts that Lil Wayne has proved himself capable of creating. For a while there, Wayne was in a zone, and he was rapping his ass off.
Without a doubt, Lil Wayne's latest album, I Am Not A Human Being II, will do big numbers, yield at least a few mainstream hits, and on paper, it will be a huge success—but there's nothing quite like that mixtape material, when Lil Wayne was honing his oddball skills and rapping like he had something to prove.
Wayne doesn't have much to prove anymore. No matter what, he'll go down in hip-hop history as one of the most important rappers of his time. And some people will always hate that. But before you judge him for "Lollipop" or Rebirth, remember the mixtapes like Dedication 2 and Da Drought 3.
Here are the 30 Best Lil Wayne Mixtape Tracks. And feel free to disagree, because if there's one thing Lil Wayne is good at, it's getting people to argue.Click to start the list