If you were to ask any fan of Rap music what the biggest album of the year was, Tha Carter 3 would most likely be the most common answer, and with great reason. In 2008, Lil Wayne would be an unavoidable force in music.
With a flood of mixtape material and countless guest appearances, he dominated the air time and developed a cult following in one fell swoop. But even with that immense momentum behind him, the question if whether or not he could and would deliver a classic with his sixth studio album Tha Carter 3 still remained.
Off top C3 seemed doomed as many tracks prematurely leaked unto the internet. Heading into the official release, Wayne gave the streets A Milli as an appetizer. An unconventional track featuring an automated and rather repetitive chorus, A Milli wasnt embraced instantly.
Additionally, the first radio single Lollipop strayed away from the world play and mastery of flow that made Weezy a mixtape phenomenon with its poppy feel and less than perfect use of auto tune. But nevertheless both songs were diamonds in the rough as A Millie would singlehandedly become every rappers favorite instrumental and Lollipop would hit number one on the charts. Now everyone was a believer.
Upon its release, Tha Carter 3 would sell over a million copies within its first week. A monumental feat to say the least, this milestone achievement would make his claim of being the best rapper alive that much more credible. But did C3 meet the gigantic hype? We thought it was good but not great.
Other media outlets disagreed; even jumping on the bozack with claims of classic before its release. Now with a couple of months for everyone to properly digest it, we put it to a real test. We put in a couple calls, sent a few emails, and flew a kite or two and got his peers to chime on whether or not Tha Carter 3 was all that. Who else but us? No-one.
Black Milk: Listened to that album like two times since its been out, not saying it wasnt good but compared to Tha Carter 1, its no match. I even still listen to Tha Carter 2 every once and while. I think Wayne definitely deserved every unit that was sold of Tha Carter 3 because I cant think of one artist that put in as much work and dropped as many verses and mixtapes leading up to there debut in Hip-Hop history.
I think we all was caught in the hype whether a person wants to admit it or not, but when the album dropped, for me personally I thought he probably should have kept some of those mixtape verses. Overall I think "A Milli" is still a dope song to this day and the Dr. Carter joint was an ill concept too.
Kardinal Offishal: Tha Carter 3 was important for Hip-Hop, because it showed that with proper artist development which no label does anymore, including his own, you can build a story and a demand. Wayne was able to spend time working the net, shows, mixtapes, magazines etc. and make a name for himself before the album was even near a release date!
At the end of the day, people were magnetized by this kid who claimed to be "the best rapper alive" and wanted to see what the album was going sound like in comparison to all the legendary mixtapes and appearances. Wayne gave you Wayne on Tha Carter 3 so the only people who were disappointed were those who weren't sure of who Lil Wayne was.
He's an ill lyricist who has certain "addictions" and is attracted to a lifestyle which some see as dangerous. That's what u got on the album, some verses that sounded like he had the "cup" in his hand half full and some that sounded like the "cup" was half empty [laughs].
Basically, there was something for everybody on that album; concepts, beats, the infamous "swag", and a good ol' dose of extra testosterone. You may not have f***ed with the whole sh*t; but whatever you didn't like, somebody else did.
Wale: Yall are trying to start some beef or something AllHipHop? I think it was great for Wayne because he challenged himself with his content. Well done Mr. Carter!
?uestlove: I got respect for anyone who keeps longer hours than I do. Post 2000 art has discounted "good" or "bad" or opinions in general. The new standard is "was it effective or not effective?" Carter 3 was effective.
Juelz Santana: I liked it, I love Tha Carter. Sh*t was hard. But to be honest my favorite out of the all of them was Tha Carter II. I love Carter 3, but my favorite was 2. But Carter 3 was a more mature Weezy and I love it for the time it came out and for how much hes grown and to sell over a million records. Its like the things you have to do to get these things.
I love part two for a lot more personal reasons. So you know, thats pretty much it. Carter 2 is a lot more harder I would say. This album is hard too, I liked the way he moved on it. But thats just my personal opinion. Like with me, when I got an album coming out I know I got to go with a radio single, I rather put out a harder record know what Im saying? But you know what the game requires and what you have to do meet certain standards you dig? Thats what it pretty much is.
Joe Budden: I liked it. I liked it, but again I dont know if I was the right guy to answer the question? I wasnt ever caught in the Lil Wayne hype? So when I went into the album I wasnt expecting the bar wasnt set so high for me. I bought the album, I put it in the car; it was one of the first albums I played in the car in a long time.
I really enjoyed it except the f***ing Martian bullsh*t (Phone Home). For a guy that put out as much work as he presented throughout the year, I think he delivered. Like I wasnt expecting the greatest rapper in the world to give me all of these crazy crazy lyrics; I just thought it was entertaining. He went left, he went right; he went hard. My favorite joint was Tie My Hands.
Sheek Louch: Lil Wayne album was hot man. I think hes doing his thing. Hes grinding man. I dont know him personally but he sound like a good dude. Kiss got him on his new album and say if you need him on a record, hell do it that night. Its like that with him; hes not running you around all crazy.
Charles Hamilton: I used to listen to Wayne. Dedication 2 was a classic mixtape to me. He defined the mixtape rapper. When it came time for C3, he had already started taking himself too serious. The fire was gone it seemed. So when the album dropped, artist to artist I bought it to support.
It was a mixtape over original grade A beats. Does that make the album wack? Whatever makes it wack is what makes it great. I have my opinion on Lil Wayne himself, but I never met him to say what's on my mind about him. I'm starting to learn that lesson more and more [laughs].
Mick Boogie: I thought it was his best album to date. I don't know if it's a classic but I thought it was an amazing growth and he also showed he could make real records and not just mixtape material.
Corey Gunz: I thought it was his best release. It was well put together. I was supposed to make the album but Im not going to throw him under the bus. But when I first heard it I bugged out. Sh*t is fire.
Alchemist: I mean I thought it was solid. I guess Im a little biased because I was able to get down and give him something for the album. But in banging the album I really like what the other producers did on there. I like the Swizz joint, I think it met up to the expectations as far as him putting out a record that signified him as an artist. It seems hes been bigger than his records for the last two years getting on everyones record and smashing them. He deserves it, I dont think anyone grinded as much as he did in a couple of years.
Paul Wall: Weezy F Baby set the standard for all rappers with this album. He killed it. He's one of the most creative artists in music. He does whatever he wants and doesn't give a damn what people think. Before he started putting auto tone on his vocals it seemed like mainly something that only T Pain did, but after Wayne everybody started doing it too.
I'm sure if I would have came out with "Lollipop" I would have got laughed out of the Rap game but Wayne set it off and made a huge impact. Also on songs like "A Milli" he doesn't rap the usual traditional sixteen bar verses and there's really not a chorus, yet it was still a huge song for '08. That shows that he's trying new styles and changing what we think of a normal rap song. He definitely lived up to his potential. He's on top of not only the rap game but music in general. Its a great thing for Hip Hop.
Shawty Lo: Yes, I think Wayne's album matched the hype, he's a very talented artist, he's one of the greatest right now, if not the greatest. He made a complete all-around album. You can put it in and listen to it from the beginning to the end.
D Nice: Let me tell you, Waynes album totally lived up to the hype. The album was crazy but A Milli was probably my least favorite as a DJ because of the eqs, it was driving me crazy to play that record. I would blow systems with that song. It became a frustrating record to play but overall that dudes album was brilliant.
I may not agree with him lyrically on every song. But the fact he took chances on certain songs and he talked about a lot of different things, it was a great album. Im proud of Wayne and he definitely deserves it. A lot of these dudes will say I made my album in a week, to me Im not impressed with that. Im more impressed with people taking a chance, I feel that way about Kanyes record.
Chamillionaire: Anyone that says it didn't match up to the hype is hating on Wayne because he had the bar set higher than the cost of a Dr. Dre track and he jumped over it with flying colors. Everyone knows Wayne can spit but in the past the only thing people could use against him was the fact that his singles and albums didn't match up to the high standards.
The album had dope ideas, plenty of lyricism, and he still managed to have success in this auto-tuned Pop world we are living in. I would hope that anyone who disagrees would be able to show me someone that did it better in 08.
Killer Mike: Did Carter 3 match the hype, 1milli sold ya got damn right it did! Hype is about numbers and hit songs and Wayne produced both and congrats to that weird lil syrup sipping dro puffing Martian Rap phenomenon for doing so. I however as a Weezy listener since Cash Money, I want my fugging Hot Boys reunion, still regard The Carter II as his one and only classic.
F*** these new stans. "Hustler music", "Shooters", Money On My Mind"; best rapper alive the lil n**** was spazzing and making sense [laughing] Whoa all ya'll new listeners grab that and Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik and EFIL4ZAGGIN too. Bye Um Gone [In Lil Wayne Voice].
Slim Thug: I think it lived up to the expectations, I was definitely satisfied with the record. I think he did a hell of a job on it. I think he definitely did what he was supposed to do and it had enough hits. For all the anticipation, I think he actually answered it and delivered.