With greatness comes haters
Dwayne Michael Carter, Jr. truly needs no introduction. His rise to fame, his album sales and net worth, his personal life, and his contribution to the game are well-known, too well-known for it to be rehashed here. Wayne is, by any definition, a rap legend. His music and influence on hip hop culture will be remembered generations after his own. Despite what anyone says, this is a fact.
Starting out in the game as a preteen, Lil Wayne has literally been rapping for more than half of his life. One doesn’t hang in the rap game for more than 25 years and not get into a few spats.
Here’s a few beefs Lil Wayne’s career has lived through.
In 2006, an unforgettable, now-famous picture of Birdman and Lil Wayne kissing hit the internet and hip-hop culture like a box of rocks. Cassidy, who is (unknown to popular knowledge) very religious, later rapped in a freestyle, “I never kissed my dad, I don’t get my Lil Wayne on.”
Major shade, right? Well, a little while afterwards, in an interview with RealTalkNY, Cassidy backtracked, saying, “I put a freestyle out on some plain jane s–t and all the DJs called it a Lil Wayne diss. I like Wayne s–t, everything he spitting is hot. I said he should just stop kissing his pops.”
Cassidy seemingly left Lil Wayne alone after that, until 2008.
Remember Lil Wayne’s track “Tha Block is Hot”? It came out in 1999, and everyone and their mamma lost their minds over it. It became an anthem of sorts for “the 99 and the 2000s.” In 2008, VH1 named it the 50th greatest hip hop song of all time.
It seemed like Cassidy didn’t agree with VH1. Also in 2008, Cassidy released his track “Let’s Get It,” rapping, “Ya block hot, I put a drawn out thea. My block hot, Ya s–t warm out there.”
Speaking of the infamous picture of Lil Wayne and Birdman…
If you let Juvenile tell it, Lil Wayne started this one. The internet seems to have forgotten exactly what Lil Wayne did to earn shots from Juvenile; Nevertheless, the shots were sent. In 2002, on his track “A H-e,” Juvenile said, “How you pull the nerve to ever start dissin’ ni–as? When you was on BET straight kissin’ ni–as!?”
The diss may have had something to do with the drama between Cash Money and Juvenile; during the early 2000s, Juvenile was going through it with Cash Money Records. In 2005, Juvenile signed with Atlantic Records, leaving Cash Money and everyone with Cash Money behind. Fans didn’t know it at the time, but while Juvenile was breaking from Cash Money, Lil Wayne was trying to.
“When Wayne was trying to leave Cash Money [in the mid 2000s], same thing,” Juvenile said. “He was trying to find out how did I leave, what did I do, he wanted to see my paperwork. I was like you can see it, but you’re gonna have to pay me for it now because now I know you ain’t with me. You’re own your own because I’m definitely on my own. If you want the paperwork and help from my end, I need to be compensated for it. [He never paid for it].”
“Because now I know you ain’t with me” were the keywords in Juvenile’s statement.
This beef takes us back all the way to April 2006, 11 years ago, when Lil Wayne was featured on Vibe Magazine’s cover wearing A Bathing Ape clothing. At the time, BAPE was a Clipse (Malice and Pusha T) and Pharrell thing more than it was an anyone else thing.
While imitation is thought to be the highest form of flattery, Pusha T didn’t like Lil Wayne wearing BAPE. So, like a four-year-old, he whined about it on “Mr. Me Too,” rapping:
“Ni–as is haters, I’m doing deals like the majors
Ice Cream Sneakers, I signed my first skater
So you can pay three and buy yourself some bapestas
Bulletproof under T-shirts because they hate us…
Wanna know the time? Better clock us
Ni–az bite the style from the shoes to the watches”
The line, and the whole “Mr. Me Too” video, struct a nerve with Wayne. In December of that same year, Complex magazine quoted Wayne, saying, “I thought the whole ‘Mr. Me Too’ video was about me, to tell you the damn truth. They think I want to be like them. I’m on a million-dollar bus going around the world charging people from $50,000 to $150,000 for verses, and I got 77 songs in magazines and I got a billion more. Do the math; you think I’m trying to be like you? No sir.”
Now, don’t forget… This beef was going on in 2006, the same year Birdman and Wayne shared a highly frowned upon kiss. The kiss was, of course, used in every diss towards Wayne that year. So, when the beef came up for discussion while The Clipse was on Hot 102.1 FM, the duo said, “If anything, I am upset about him using the F word before my name, being as though he likes to sit around and kiss men. If you gonna kiss men, you can’t even use them words in conjunction with The Clipse, Pharrell, or any of the [Star Trak ] family. He’s definitely acting out right now. Jay-Z? Do what you gotta do. But involve The Clipse? You don’t want to do that. I already don’t look at him like a G. He aint nothing like me.”
A year later, in 2007, The Clipse still hadn’t let it go. During an interview with Laced Magazine, the duo was asked how they felt about Lil Wayne calling himself the greatest rapper alive; Pusha T said, “You can’t kiss other men, you can’t wobble dee-wobble dee, and you can’t bite styles. You can’t bite everybody’s styles. You can’t try to rap like Jay-Z, dress like the Clipse, become a coke dealer after 5 albums, and now dress like Jim Jones. You can’t do all that and be a legend. You have to be a trendsetter and he ain’t setting any trends.”
This beef wasn’t “settled” until 2011, five years after the fact. Maybe Pusha T’s fame and status compared to Lil Wayne’s humbled him; Pusha was quoted, saying, “Ever since Lil Wayne went in to jail, that whole little stint [between me and him] is really dead and over with. I don’t have any ill will towards Wayne, Cash Money, or any of them. There was definitely a time period when I felt a certain way [about him], but as of right now I don’t. That’s just where I once was. I don’t even like speaking on it. [On Fear of God] I actually said, ‘They had freed Weezy, congratulations.’ When I seen Wayne in Miami, I told him, ‘Congratulations on getting out of jail.’”