20 Watts

Lil’ Wayne: Rock Star? by carlywolkoff
February 20, 2009, 2:51 pm
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When I had originally heard that Lil’ Wayne was working on a rock album, I immediately had a flashback to Hot 97’s Summer Jam concert in June where the rapper took the stage, high off his ass, guitar in hand. ¬†Eyes ablaze, he strummed the same chord over and over and the crowd unsurprisingly went nuts. ¬†This performance was entertaining for the five minutes it lasted, but in no way did I think I was witnessing the next Jimmy Page.

¬†Naturally, my reaction to the new rock album due in May was biased. Weezy’s latest venture is supposedly the result of not hearing beats inspirational enough for him to want to rap. ¬†I guess after recording and releasing ten new songs a day, one would run out of inspiration.

This transformation from rap connoisseur to rockstar is not as sudden as it may appear. ¬†Toward the end of 2008, Lil’ Wayne released the song, “Hot Revolver,” where he samples lyrics from Green Day’s “Basket Case” over a rock refrain, which I obsessed over for a good month. ¬†I decided to disregard my unfavorable recollection of Lil’ Wayne- the Rockstar, and listen to “Prom Queen,” which is the first single off of Rebirth.

I appreciate his attempt to cross genre lines and substantiate his legacy as an innovator. But if Lil’ Wayne wants to be a rockstar, this is not ¬†a good first impression. The single is just okay; his raspy, unintelligible voice is still intact, but somehow it doesn’t sound right over harsh electric guitar riffs. ¬†

I will not quickly dismiss this latest endeavor, because if I know anything about Lil’ Wayne, he is quite possibly one of the most dedicated artists. Even if this album sucks, ¬†he’ll release hundreds of flops a week until he gets it right. Like his rap on Santogold’s, Unstoppable: “My name is Weezy/I’m almost Perfect/And I work harder than hardworking.”

– Carly Wolkoff


Lil’ Wayne’s voice DOES sound right as the voice over on the new Gatorade commercials. I need “it’s the emblem of a warrior” to be my ringtone. It’s the best thing I’ve ever heard. I mean that with sooo much irony.

Comment by Mary C.

[…] and mostly succeed. In a weird indie rock equivalent to Lil’ Wayne‚Äôs insistence on releasing a rock album this year, Why? have put together both a well-informed rock record and a worthy follow-up to their past […]

Pingback by 20 Watts Reviews Why?’s Eskimo Snow « 20 Watts

[…] Pitchfork interviews Weezer’s Rivers Cuomo, and sheds light on the band’s upcoming album,¬†Raditutde. If, like us, you are wondering how Lil Wayne ended up on a Weezer track, this is your answer. [Previous 20 Watts Coverage: Lil Wayne: Rock Star] […]

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Lil Wayne sings from the heart. You will see that level of sincerity that the other rappers lack. He is such a great artist.

Comment by lilwayneringtones

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