How Many Hits Does Lil Wayne Have?

Lil Wayne, Dwayne Michael Carter, is an infamous rapper whose career had a vast mid-2000s come up. Lil Wayne is renowned for his incredibly unique lyrical style with his scratchy, smoker’ s-tone linguistics, and his use of metaphor and phrasing, and his syllable bending. Weezy’s career has had a lasting effect on his fans and audience, as well as the industry, despite a decade since the last Carter album release in the 2010s. Although Lil Wayne has a huge number of industry-acclaimed hits, the question of how many hits is not as easily answered. A reflection on Lil Wayne’s life works is needed to put a true perspective on how prolific his career has actually been. In this article, we’ll attempt to lay out the life and times of Dwayne Michael Carter by covering his history, his industry come-up, and his “almost” career demise.

Lil Wayne’s Rise To Fame and Career History

We first learn of the young Lil Wayne when he joined up with Cash Money Rapper Lil Doogie in 1991. The artist joined the Youth and Young Turk crew that year and renamed themselves the Hot Boys. Get It How U Live, Hot Boys’ first album, had the southern hip-hop foursome reaping success from their lyrical creation. Still, it was their second album, Guerrilla Warfare, in 1999 that slingshot Lil Wayne’s career into the music industry’s forefront.  Later in 1999, Lil Wayne released Tha Block is Hot to critical and commercial success. Tha Block is Hot was his debut album as a solo artist and was his first album, which rose straight to platinum.  Even greater acclaims followed this success in the 2000s. As Lil Wayne’s career began to take off, he went gold for Lights Out and the 500 Degreez of 2002. He also performed on the Destiny’s Child 2004 hit single, Soldier, and released the first in his Carter album collection.  Tha Carter I sold incredibly well in 2004, at 116,000 copies its first week. By September 7, 2004, just twenty days before his birthday, the album was certified Platinum for sales of over one million copies in the US. Tha Carter II was released in 2005, and Tha Carter III was released in 2008. Tha Carter III became his biggest-selling album to date at 3.97 million copies sold,10.5 million sold across its singles. Tha Carter III went up for 5x Platinum certification through the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).  He strayed from his typical path in 2010, with a rock album named Rebirth, which also went gold. Later that same year, he returned to his rapping roots with I’m Not A Human Being and his 2011 release of Tha Carter IV album went double-platinum. He emerged as hip-hop’s tatted-up freak for half a decade or more, the self-professed mutant who ate rappers for breakfast while inhabiting a world of his own making. He was an acclaimed artist taking the industry by storm and breaking down barriers tipping the scales of cultural ubiquity for a solo rap artist by releasing platinum album after platinum album and a flood of mixtapes.  But in the period after Lil Wayne’s breakthrough, seemingly at the top of his game is when his legal battles with Cash Money Records began full speed ahead, putting a damper on the artists’ career and creativity.

Lil Wayne’s “Lost” Album

Though Lil Wayne is an accomplished artist with a noteworthy career, nothing has done as much to keep his legacy alive as the music he did not release, well not for almost a decade anyway.  2011 Tha Carter V, the fifth in Lil Wayne’s Carter series, was scheduled to release. That same year, after his prison sentence, Lil Wayne’s legal battles with his then record label Cash Money escalated.  He was asking for a release of contract and for the rights to release his album to the public on his own terms. After years of legal battles and false hopes that the album would drop in 2013, by 2014, the album was put on an almost-permanent hold, and Lil Wayne would not be able to release Tha Carter Five until seven years later in the fall of 2018. The rapper finally reached a settlement in the summer of 2018 after years of artistic, financial, and legal battles with Cash Money label owner Bryan “Kid” Williams, finally freeing him from his long-time label and clearing the way for him to release the album fans have been waiting on for seven years. 

The America’s Beloved Rapper Alien

The Carter V was finally released in September of 2018. It debuted at No 1. on the US top 200 list, sold over 480,000 digital album equivalents, and had 140,000 pure album sales. It had the second-highest streaming week for an album with 433 million streams. Now, a year since the long-awaited Tha Carter V has been released, there are rumors of a deluxe version of the album to be released at the end of September. Some of the original tracts were absolutely lost during the battle for Weezy’s freedom from his label, and this new, duplex edition is rumored to hold some never before heard tracks and renditions.

Lil Wayne’s Influence on the Industry

Weezy opened the door for a generation of musicians. Not just through his music, but through the culture, he built behind his music. Lil Wayne has been a force to be reckoned with in hip-hop for decades, as his contributions to the industry have helped pave the way for some of hip-hop and rap’s most acclaimed artists.  Young Money Imprint signees Drake and Nicki Minaj were coached by Weezy himself back when he was with Cash Money Records. Now, both artists have established careers not only as rap titHis performance does not solely determine Lil Wayne’s importance defined how lucrative hip-hop can be.  Dwayne Michael Carter Jr. is an indisputable trailblazer in the hip hop community. He broke Elvis Presley’s long-standing record in 2012 as a solo artist to have over 100 songs on the Billboard hits list. 

Lil’ Wayne’s Top Twenty Hits of All Time

Lil Wayne – “A Milli” – Tha Carter III Lil Wayne – “Go DJ” – Tha Carter Lil Wayne – “Let The Beat Build” – Tha Carter III Lil Wayne – “Fireman” – The W. Carter Collection 2 Lil Wayne ft. Cory Gunz – “6 Foot 7 Foot” – Tha Carter IV Lil Wayne – “Best Rapper Alive” – Tha Carter II Lil Wayne ft. Static – “Lollipop” – Tha Carter III Lil Wayne – “Swag Surfin” – No Ceilings Lil Wayne – “Tha Block Is Hot” – Tha Block Is Hot Lil Wayne ft. Reel – “I Miss My Dawgs” – Tha Carter Lil Wayne – “Hustler Musik” – Tha Carter II Young Money ft. Gucci Mane – “Steady Mobbin” – We Are Young Money Lil Wayne – “I’m Me” – Tha Carter III Lil Wayne ft. Drake – “Believe Me” – Tha Carter V Lil Wayne & Birdman – “Stuntin’ Like My Daddy” – Like Father, Like Son Lil Wayne – “Georgia … Bush” – Dedication 2 Lil Wayne ft. Bobby Valentino and Kidd Kidd – “Mrs. Officer” – Tha Carter III Lil Wayne – “Walk It Out” – Da Drought 3 Lil Wayne – “Ice Cream Paint Job” – No Ceilings Lil Wayne – “I’m Single” – I Am Not a Human Being

Lil Wayne’s Career Lives On Despite Industry Efforts to tear him Down

Lil Wayne’s importance is not solely determined by his performance. Wayne’s cult status is transcendent, and he would even say “god-like.”  So can the question of how many hits does Lil Wayne have actually be answered? By Billboard Top 200 standards he has over 109 and counting. Lil Wayne is most notably the most acclaimed artist with a mythologized album who has fought the public struggle both tooth and nail for his work to see the light of day. But it is his fight for the release of his art, even after a rise to fame and a successful career that has changed the industry forever. How will this deluxe re-release continue to affect that change? Only time will tell. Luckily it doesn’t look like another seven-year wait for his fan base.   Source 1 – https://www.biography.com/musician/lil-wayne Source 2 – https://www.billboard.com/articles/list/1554426/lil-waynes-top-10-biggest-career-moments Source 3 – https://www.theguardian.com/music/2016/sep/30/lil-wayne-demise-hip-hop-trailblazer-memoir-gone-til-november Source 4 – https://www.npr.org/2018/09/25/650128858/the-five-lives-of-lil-wayne-tha-carter-v

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