By 2004, Lil Wayne had proven himself in the rap scene as a true talent but as more Cash Money signee’s left the label for better deals, Wayne was left to rep the label that made him on his fourth studio album, “Tha Carter.” It was a step up for Wayne, proving he could hold his own and demonstrating his loyalty to the label. A certified Cash Money classic, “Tha Carter” featured Mannie Fresh’s beats at the top of his game and Wayne showing promise as an upcoming artist to those outside NOLA. The release would help him land a feature with Destiny’s Child’s song “Solider” with T.I. later that year. Songs to check out from this record include “Go DJ,” “This Is The Carter,” “Ain’t That Bitch” and “Bring It Back.”
One of the most interesting stories in rap, Lil Wayne started as a child prodigy in New Orleans, worked his way to the top of Cash Money Records before helping usher in a new era of hip-hop. He made rap mainstream and brought it to the digital age before crashing his career with mediocre music, foolish decisions and a legal battle with Cash Money while rising stars he mentored replaced his relevance like Drake and Nicki Minaj. But much like a prodigal son, Lil Wayne returned to his roots and made one of the greatest comeback records in rap history.