Mannie Fresh, Birdman’s ex-right hand man and Lil’ Wayne’s old mentor, has stepped up to the plate to take a swing at what’s really going on in Wayne’s world. In an interview with Star Tribune, he simplifies it for us: Lil’ Wayne is just outgrowing the record label.
“I just think Wayne is growing as an artist,” Fresh said. “Wayne has given us some great albums, but he has never given us that album with like a Justin Timberlake on it — with features where like, OK, this is what we expect from an artist of your caliber. … Like you went out and got Cher on the song, because you are that dude. You’re on that level.”
Lil’ Wayne has sued Birdman for $51 million to nullify his contracts and the outcome of the case has just about everyone on their toes. The feud between the two has escalated to a point where it may have also saturated relations between Birdman and other Cash Money members. Over the weekend, Birdman was denied access into Nicki Minaj’s Grammy soiree, which sent speculation circulating.
Creatively for Lil’ Wayne, Cash Money may be limiting, especially after 11 studio album releases. Comparing Lil’ Wayne to Jay Z respectively, Fresh says that one thing that Jay Z does to stay relevant is his continual collaborations with top-level artists spanning from different genres.
“He’s going to get somebody with star power that can bring other people to the table. If I did do a song and I got Justin Timberlake on it, I got Justin Timberlake fans as well. I think Wayne is starting to see it in that way. Hip hop can only bring you so far.” –– Olivia Jade Khoury