You can debate Lil Wayne’s place in rap history, you can argue over his influence and power and you can use each release as evidence for your argument for or against him. Go ahead, write that think piece.
Me? I’ll be sitting here laughing at pussy references, groaning at super cheesy lines and having a blast.
Seriously though, some of y’all take Lil Wayne too seriously. He has some of the most intense stans outside of Eminem, stans who routinely call me a hater, who claim these lyric breakdown pieces demean a rapper that they hold in such high regard. But Lil Wayne songs aren't about thought and social change, they're mostly about menstruation punchlines. So if we can't have some fun along with him, what’s the point of even having a Lil Wayne?
So when I saw Free Weezy dropped, I wasn’t interested in a 1-Listen Review, I didn’t care about any shots at Young Thug or how the project would fall into the Birdman breakup framework. All I wanted to do was spend the day breaking down his always absurd, always entertaining bars, and so that’s what I did. Similar to Sorry 4 the Wait 2, I spent the day going through each song and I picked out a line for one of the three Weezy lyric categories:
- Best (the stuff that is actually good)
- Worst (the stuff that makes you groan in pain)
- Best-Worst (the stuff that is actually good, but also makes you groan in pain, but you kind of love it, but it makes you want to die)
No need to thank me. I'm just doing the Lord's work.
Best: "From here to Hell, I hear them hail, I give them hell, I'm spittin' hail, I'm Clinton, well, I did inhale"
Often Wayne rapping the same (or very similar) words irks me, but all these hail/hell lines work, especially with his flow. It sounds like a Dr. Seuss line; “Horton hears a fire ass mixtape”
Worst: "My cocaine white as a white beluga, I like bazookas."
First off Belugas are already white. If he had just said “Cocaine as white as a beluga” I would have given him a million points and deemed him the rap game Jacques Cousteau, but adding the extra white in there is both redundant and awkward. Also, Lil Wayne likes bazookas, mostly because it’s the only word he thought of that rhymes with beluga.
Best-Worst: "Holy shit, I'm the holy shit, I'm God's manure"
I should just groan at this one, but the more I think about it, the more I like the ring of "gods manure." It's like a dad joke. You pretend to hate it but deep down you actually enjoyed it.
Best: "I was larger than life, should've got a bigger coffin"
This one could have fit in Best-Worst, shit it could have even fit for just worst, but for some reason, I really really enjoyed it. I don't know, your guess is as good as mine, but alas, here we are. This line is gold and I'm standing by it.
Worst: "Bad bitches in my coffin, suck dick 'til they cough"
Is he implying that he’ll be getting posthumous blowjobs? Because that’s weird and I don't want to think about it.
Best-Worst: "Casper the Friendly, Tunechi Cobain"
On the one hand I love it. Shoutout to Casper the Friendly Ghost, who doesn't get nearly enough rap shoutouts. On the other, I'm confused. Are Casper the Friendly and Tunechi Cobain two different names, or is it "Casper the Friendly Tunechi Cobain"? The former makes more sense, but then why isn't it Tunechi the Friendly? Is he suggesting he's like the friendly ghost of Kurt Cobain? More importantly, why am I pulling my hair out over this?
"I Feel Good"
Best: "She know I'm going through a lot so she say my name in Gospel / No weapon formed against Weezy shall prosper"
Man, that “No weapon formed against Weezy shall prosper” line is fucking amazing. No joke, I straight up love that line.
Worst: "Bald like a butch bitch"
I don't know what this has to do with anything ever.
Best-Worst: "Money in the shoebox, what's up with all these shoeboxes?"
Did he just rhyme shoebox with shoeboxes? Also, I love the idea of walking into a room in his house and being confused about the origin of all these shoeboxes full of cash.
"My Heart Races On"
Best: "Oh, momma hate I got my daddy’s eyes / Never looked into my daddy’s eyes, he ain't have the time"
Holy shit. Wayne’s got bars. That’s a cold ass line. We make fun of Wayne a lot, but let’s give credit where credit is due. One of his best lines in years. It's surprisingly deep.
Worst: "We in a race against racists, that’s a color run"
I love Wayne’s effort to be socially conscious - it’s a big step up from a song of pussy references - but cramming racism into his "step child" rhyme scheme isn't exactly the second coming of Nas.
Best-Worst: "I turn around, run backwards to see what second place look like"
The epitome of a Best-Worst line. It's terrible but come on, you know you love it.
Best: "Lord all I know is strippers, all they know is poles / All they sell is pussy, cause they been sold their soul"
Lil Wayne often raps about strippers. Most of the time it’s about their woman parts but here he gets pretty philosophical. He’s the Magic City Buddah.
Worst: "Erase I got that yay, I got that ladidadida / And a kamikaze squad, and you chicken parmesan"
I’m convinced he didn’t know how to end this line, opened the fridge, saw his leftovers from the Olive Garden and just threw in “Chicken Parm.”
Best-Worst: "Look at how big my safe is, that bitch got double doors"
I want to hate this line so bad but it made me chuckle. Damn you, Wayne. Damn you.
"I’m That Nigga"
Best: "Without my cream I'm sour onion"
Shoutouts to sour cream and onion chips. They are the No Ceilings of chips. Like nobody is going to ask for sour cream and onion, but if you have em around? Hell yeah. Anyway, I like chips and this line.
Worst: "These niggas can't hold me, I'm a handful"
A handful literally means able to be held. The worst.
Best-Worst: "These sluts is on my nuts, I feel like granola"
I made a stink face the first time I heard it, but the more I thought about it the more it became clear it's awful...but dope. I think there might be something inherently hilarious about picturing Wayne eating granola after he drinks a gallon of lean.
Best: "Crazy bout her vaginal and every other avenue"
I don’t know, man. I just don’t know. There’s no rhyme or reason to this. Sometimes you just love Lil Wayne rapping about vaginas. If loving Lil Wayne rapping about vaginas is wrong than I don’t want to be right.
Worst: "I smell her panties while she in the bathroom / And taste whatever she left in them"
Best-Worst: "I thought I was whippin' till that pussy whipped me/ I fell asleep in it like Whitney"
Too soon for a Whitney punchline? Yeah, you're right, it's not. That's a terrible-dope line.
Best: "I faced my fears and told them motherfuckers y'all too gorgeous"
Like the dialogue from True Detective, I’m not quite sure what this means, but it has a nice ring to it so I’ll just get really high and enjoy it without asking questions. It's better that way.
Worst: "Bad bitches in flower dresses with tight pussies / I found the crevice"
This line barely rhymes and doesn't fit with the song. I’ll give Lil Wayne a little more room than most rappers to mess around, but he can’t be this lazy. Call me old-fashioned, but I like my pussy references to be logical and well-executed.
Best-Worst: "And I don't give 2 fucks / I ain't a koala"
Cory Gunz comin’ in hot with his one verse every four years. I had no idea what this means, but upon further “research” I learned that koalas have two dicks. Knowing is half the battle.
"Thinkin Bout You"
Best: "Lord just keep Lil Reginae away from birds and bees / Let her be strong as the woman that gave birth to me"
Really like that second part. Straight up a great line. Also, I like this because I like picturing Wayne uncomfortably trying to explain the meaning behind “Pussy Monster” lyrics to his daughter.
Worst: "She make my heart skip a beat / She dropped her drum stick"
This is hot garbage, not even in an endearing or ironic way. Straight up terrible.
Best-Worst: "I eat that pussy cause it's sweet as sweet as one six"
I get what he was going for here and it's clever, but this got weird fast. Eat pussy because it’s as sweet as a sweet 16? Tyga ghostwriting for him now?
Best: "I'm left to live life alone, I'mma need more styrofoams"
Lean is Wayne’s strong suit, but lean references often aren’t. They are a little heavy-handed and obvious, but this one is actually pretty good. Kind of dark and depressing and a little funny.
Well shit. There’s isn’t really a bad line. I mean there are bad lines (see below) but nothing that makes me want to puke. Point Weezy.
Best-Worst: "You look like yourself and I look like I'm by myself, fuck"
On the one hand this isn’t that bad, but on the other, since when is Drake ghostwriting for Lil Wayne? [Answer: Probably longer than we'd like to admit.]
"Post Bail Ballin"
Best: "I just looked at your bitch and got eye fucked"
This is some vintage Lil Wayne. Hard for me to hate on this. Well, it’s not that hard, but I'm not gonna do it.
Worst: "I'm courting swimsuit models that don't know who I am / Foreign twins, I tell 'em that I star in films
Only Wayne would brag about not being famous. Although I guess he does star in films.
Best-Worst: "My warrant clear as day like Doris is"
I really don’t want this to work as much as it does, but I can’t deny it. It's a terrible pun, but an incredible pun. He has done did it again.
Best: "The sickest and the smoothest, the gifted and the goofiest"
Gifted and the goofiest is the best description for Lil Wayne in forever.
Worst: "Nigga that's what you'll get like Ken and Ryu"
How genius is Lil Wayne? Lil Wayne is so genius he makes you think he’s a genius despite not being a genius. I spent a good twenty minutes trying to figure out just what the fuck this line means and I don't have a clue. It makes me feel like I’m missing something painfully obvious. Then I remember it’s Wayne and it’s perfectly fine to throw in Ken & Ryu simply because it rhymes. If you can explain this one to me, I’ll happily change it, but you can’t just throw Street Fighter reference out randomly and get away with it.
Best-Worst: "Blookah, blookah, blookah"
I love rapper gun sounds. I love it even more when the gun noise sounds like a bubble gun.
Best: "Pay niggas to do it correctly, two ninas they lesbians / I gotta shoot you with both or else one would get jealous"
Death, taxes and Lil Wayne personifying his guns as women.
Worst: "I got a joint I just rolled, I got a Liu Kang kick" - Wiz Khalifa
The dude spends half the verse making cliche sick lines and caps it with a Liu Kang reference? Played out. Hearing Wiz’s corniness did make me appreciate Wayne that much more. They are on the same level of corniness, and Wayne references pussy as often as Wiz references weed, but Wayne is lightyears ahead. Flow, delivery, and that certain je ne sais quoi really prove to be the difference between him and corny dudes like Wiz. I'm not sure I quite appreciated it until I heard Wiz Khalifa on this song.
Best-Worst: "I left my shady bitch, I got a nice tan now"
See above. If this was Wiz I’d be grilling him, but it’s Weezy so he gets points. Not saying it’s fair, but that’s the way the rap world works.
"Whitegirl" (I wonder what this is about...)
Best: "Hey, its Lil Wayne nigga / I been this shit since Lil Zane nigga"
Yes!!! I haven't thought about Lil Zane in forever. Since Fastball really, remember Fastball? That's a great movie…also, both Lil Wayne and I are old.
Worst: "My plug name is Hector / But back in his country they call him Héctòr"
Why did he mention they pronounce his name differently? It’s like an old person telling you a story and filling you in with the most random details. Wayne on that Grandpa Simpson tip. I bet Hector is muy enojado that Wayne’s blowing up his spot.
Best-Worst: "We serial killers, you can get your Captain Crunch nigga"
At first it took me a minute to get why he chose Captain Crunch, because I’m not a drug dealer. Once I got it, it got me.
"Pick Up Your Heart"
Best: "Yesterday I met a woman on the stairs that wasn't there / She wasn't there today, I really hope she go away"
From pussy metaphors to late 19th century poems, Lil Wayne is in the damn building.
Worst: "I'm still watching bootlegs cause I can't go to the movies / Cause I'm bigger than the actors in the movies / Me and your bitch made a movie"
I let this rhyming the same word thing go for too long. Dude just rhymed movie with movie three times in a row. Either do it for two minutes like usual or don’t do it all. No half-measures.
Best-Worst: "Please pardon my restroom but Tunechi got the longest shit list"
The kind of line that you love, but also grosses you out just a little bit, which actually describes most of Lil Wayne's music.
Well that was fun. Of course it was, it's Lil Wayne! Listen, I’m often hard on him (pause), I give him a ton of shit (insert Lil Wayne punchline) and he’s definitely not the same Wayne who made “Go DJ,” but he’s still one of the most entertaining rappers in the game. Nobody has a style like Wayne. Part of the fun of listening to him is be able to write features like this, pointing out the good, the bad and the good-bad. You can call me a hater, you can declare him the voice of our generation, but if you can’t appreciate the way Lil Wayne can make you laugh and hate the existence of rapping in the very same bar, you aren’t a real Lil Wayne fan.
And, as always, remember kids, if you're listening to Lil Wayne and you're confused, it's probably a vagina reference.
[Lucas Garrison is a writer for DJBooth.net. His favorite album is “College Dropout,” but you can also tweet him your favorite Migos songs at @LucasDJBooth.]