Most everyone has at least heard of Lil Wayne, but not many know about his history or his many, many achievements. From a music career in e
lementary school to owning a successful record label, here are a few reasons why Weezy just the best.
1. He wrote his first rap at age eight, and at age nine, was the youngest artist on his record label.
I would give anything to travel back to '91 just to hear baby Wayne spit a few bars.
2. He worked his way up from poverty and a broken family.
His mother had him when she was just 19, his parents divorced when he was two, and he grew up in New Orleans without his biological father. His second stepfather "Rabbit", who Wayne considers his father figure, was murdered before Wayne's music took off.
3. He was a theater kid!
He played the Tin Man in his middle school's production of The Wiz! This would totally explain his altogether adorable dancing and ability to work a crowd.
5. His collab with Destiny's Child was WOKE.
A male rapper working with an all-female R&B group was pretty bold for 2004, but we're so glad that "Soldier" is a thing that happened.
6. He freestyles most of his music.
In the early 2000's, Wayne stopped writing down his lyrics because he believes things flow much more organically when he spits his verses off the top of his head.
7. "Tha Carter III" sold 1M copies its first week, won a Grammy, and went triple platinum.
This is the album that brought us bops like "Lollipop", "A Milli", and "Mrs. Officer".
8. After the release of "Tha Carter IV", he became the male artist with the most songs to reach the Top 100.
He actually stole this title from the King himself, Elvis Presley. And it makes sense. I mean, who doesn't lose their minds when the hook for "6 Foot 7 Foot" comes on?
9. His latest album, "Tha Carter V", came seven years after "Tha Carter IV" and it still had the second largest streaming week for an album.
We waited patiently, and we were truly blessed. He is statistically the G.O.A.T. You can't argue with the math.
10. In spite of physical health problems, he continues to tour.
Wayne suffers from epilepsy, for which he is taking seizure medication. His seizures are still ongoing, and was hospitalized as recently as a year ago.
11. He is a lyrical genius.
People are so in love with Lil Wayne for the clever and thoughtful lyricism that seems to flow out of him like water. My personal favorite: "So misunderstood, but what's a world without enigma?"
12. Despite his fame, he doesn't compare himself to other rap artists.
He says he doesn't feel it necessary to put himself up against other people, which is a pretty admirable quality.
13. He has multiple charity platforms.
Wayne supported the re-launch of the "Stop The Violence" movement, which is an initiative to lower violence rates in African-American communities. He even started his own charity called "One Family" to help with disaster relief in his hometown of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. He's donated countless items to his fans and community, from skateboard parks to Thanksgiving turkeys to wheelchairs. Over the years, Wayne has hosted multiple charity concerts for different causes.
14. He's an advocate for mental health awareness.
At age 12, Wayne became a suicide attempt survivor. Even today, he enjoys therapy because it offers him a deep connection with another person. He often talks about his efforts to become a better person every day.
15. Even Obama likes him!
During his presidency, Obama revealed that he's a huge Lil Wayne fan, and in return, Wayne sampled him on "Tha Carter V". If that's not love, I don't know what is.
16. He enjoys rock music.
Wayne has listed Nirvana among other rock bands as inspiration for his music style, and it shows!
17. He has his own record label.
"Young Money Entertainment", Wayne's label, has released 12 albums that made the Billboard 200 charts.
18. He's got some film creds.
Wayne has been featured in over 60 TV shows and movies. That's more than some mainstream actors!
19. He's a smart cookie.
Lil Wayne was an honors student with straight A's in grade school, but dropped out of school at age 14 to further pursue music. (He later earned his GED.) He enrolled at the University of Houston as a psychology major, but had to drop out due to schedule conflicts even thought he was making high grades. Eventually, Houston gave him an honorary degree. Later, he transferred to the University of Phoenix, earning a Bachelor's degree in psychology.
20. He's a huge sports fan.
Packers, Bruins, Red Sox and Lakers... Lil Wayne loves them all! He's even written some commentary for ESPN! He's always a SK8R Boi! He says it helps him to clear his mind, and that perfecting a new skill is like winning a Grammy.
21. He is adorable with his four kids.
Wayne's kids love to do the "Uproar" challenge with him, where they blast his new song and get him to dance. He says that his oldest daughter Reginae is his biggest critic, analyzing his shows from the audience. Wayne gushes over his children, showing the world his soft side when it comes to family. In a recent interview, he said, ""My four jewels -- when I FaceTime one of them, man, everything goes away,"
22. He shows us how to be on good terms with our exes.
Wayne is outspokenly supportive of his childrens' mothers, and remains loyal and caring to all members of his family, together or not.
See? I told you. He's the legend our world needs. You may now continue listening to "Tha Carter V" on repeat.