To say 2016 has been a difficult year for Lil Wayne would be an understatement. The Young Money/Cash Money artist has been involved in a long and heated legal battle with label executive and music mogul Birdman Sandusky – a man Lil Wayne once called his father and a man who still affirms that Lil Wayne is still his son.
The public dispute between the two stems from Lil Wayne’s claim that Birdman owes Weezy $51m dollars from a deal he penned with Universal Music and the fact that Birdman has spent the last few years blocking Lil Wayne from releasing his highly anticipated album ‘The Carter V. The effects of the dispute have been devastating for Wayne, taking a toll on his mental and physical health – during the summer, a plane had to be evacuated due to Lil Wayne having seizures aboard and a few concert dates were cancelled this year due to the rapper’s ill health. Lil Wayne has publicly dissed Birdman for his mistreatment which has baffled the rap industry since Birdman has managed Lil Wayne since the tender age of 14 and would be expected to have the rappers’ best interests at heart – guess there are no friends or family in this industry.
On Twitter Lil Wayne stated: ‘I AM NOW DEFENSELESS AND mentally DEFEATED & I leave gracefully and thankful I luh my fanz but I'm dun.’ In response to Wayne’s tweet about retirement there was an outcry of support and solidarity from other artists such as Chance The Rapper who said: ‘Dear LilTunechi I just wanna remind you that absolutely nothing and no one in this world can defeat you. Tell them devils back back.’ Label buddy and mentee Drake brought Lil Wayne out on tour the night after the tweet was sent and posted a message in support of his idol Lil Wayne on Instagram.
Surprisingly, a rapper seen as an enemy of Wayne’s by many, Young Thug, expressed rather extravagantly that Lil Wayne is the reason he raps and that he wished that Weezy loved him as much as he loved Lil Wayne. This message was treated with suspicion by rap fans who remember that Young Thug’s tour manager was convicted of attempting to kill Lil Wayne last year by shooting at his tour bus in 2015 – the situation regarding events and Young Thug’s involvement are still unclear. Wayne fans still have not forgiven Thug for what was seen as ultimate form of disrespect when Young Thug named one of his albums ‘The Barter 6’ – an imitation of Lil Wayne’s Carter series – Young Thug still maintains that he was paying homage to his idol Wayne with the title.
Amidst the confusion of Wayne’s retirement, rumours circulated on social media that rapper and MMG label owner Rick Ross would attempt to sign Lil Wayne and allow him to release his album on his label – an interesting move considering Rick Ross has publicly dissed Birdman for his treatment of Lil Tunechi but one that is unlikely. The most frustrating thing for Lil Wayne and his fans is Birdman’s persistence in blocking Lil Wayne from releasing new projects. The rapper has had to jump on collaborations with other rappers such as Logic and 2chainz to maintain mainstream relevance as fans wait patiently for his Carter V album to drop.
There is definitely a lot more to this saga but clearly Lil Wayne is in a really dark place right now – music is everything to him, we wish him the best in his time of need.
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