By Kathy Iandoli
Get ready Lil Tunechi fans. Lil Wayne will walk out of New York’s Riker’s Island on November 4 after serving eight months in jail. And when Inmate #02616544L hits the streets to reclaim his position as the best rapper alive—and maybe even hang out with Drake in Las Vegas?—RapFix has a tip sheet for him to catch up on what he’s missed. This is hip-hop people … eight months is a long time.
1. Nicki Minaj Rules The World
When Weezy entered jail, Nicki—and Roman Zolanski—was making waves. However, eight months later, she’s a household name. After a slew of collaborations and two broken Billboard records under her pink heavyweight belt, she’s delivering Pink Friday on November 22, two and a half weeks after Wayne hits the bricks. They used to call her the female Lil Wayne, but maybe now he’ll be donned the male Nicki Minaj?
2. No Detox … Yet
When Wayne went in, anticipation swirled that Dr. Dre’s long-awaited Detox would finally drop in early Fall of 2010. Then in June, “Under Pressure” hit the web and the world continued to hope that their might be some new Andre Young soon. But it’s November 1 and we’ve got no new Dre in our iTunes so we’re crossing our fingers for 2011. We did get to see Dre during Jay-Z and Eminem’s Home & Home tour, where the two iconic MCs performed in Detroit and New York. Rumors circulated that Wayne would guest on Detox, so, hey, that’s still a possibility right?
3. Kanye West’s G.O.O.D. Fridays and “Runaway” short film
Following a spanking new Twitter account (@kanyewest) boasting things like fur pillow purchases, Kanye West had the amazing idea to release a new track every week and name the practice G.O.O.D. Fridays. Fans love it, because, well, it’s free and it’s new. Then ‘Ye even debuted a movie called “Runaway,” that we heard cost $600,000, about a phoenix falling from the sky. Kanye tries to change the destiny of the bird, played by model-actress Selita Ebanks, without much success— #spoiler she has to fly and burn to live and ‘Ye can’t come along—however the soundtrack? Two thumbs up. Now that Weezy’s on his way home, we want a Young Money x G.O.O.D. Friday cut immediately.
4. I Am Not a Human Being Reached #1
I Am Not a Human Being reached #1 on the Billboard 200 Albums charts. The EP, comprised of tracks Wayne recorded before entering prison, met a wishy washy response from the press, but his fans proved that their opinion means cash money … and probably Young Money too. They want their Weezy and they want him now.
5. Bun B Is Still The Man
While Wayne was building the Young Money empire, Bun B had plans for the South. The H-Town veteran kicked off the release of his solo LPTrill OG, which hit shelves in August, early with freestyles galore. Then he joined Twitter (@BunBTrillOG), and like @LilTunechi, Bun tweeted new sides to himself … like his love for “The View.” Trill OG overdelivered, and even nabbed a Tupac cameo for his cut “Right Now” which also featured a Pimp C verse … with a chorus from Trey Songz. Pimp C’s posthumous The Naked Soul Of Sweet Jones arrived last month and proved the man that is partners with Drake will always be the living legend, carrying on the legacy of his fallen friend.
6. The Rise of Waka Flocka Flame
Waka Flocka Flame! Waka Flocka! Waka! Yes, he’s our #8 Hottest MC in the Game for 2010 and yes, he has a song called “No Hands” featuring Roscoe Dash and Wale that you probably can’t escape right now if you live in Atlanta. Plus, don’t lie, you like “Hard In The Paint.” Waka began as Gucci Mane’s protégé and went on to score three Billboard hits on their R&B/Hip-Hop chart and surprise, well, most hip-hop fans.
7. Swizz Beatz Married Alicia Keys And Welcomed Son Egypt Dean
Love is in the air for one of hip-hop’s favorite producers. Swizz Beatz married a very pregnant Alicia Keys earlier this year and the couple welcomed their first child, Egypt Dean last month. MTV News chatted with the two at Key’s recent charity event, where Sade performed with Jay-Z—yeah, we just said that, crazy right?—and they were literally glowing. On yeah, and this year’s saying is ‘Oh you fancy huh?’ thanks to Swizzy, Drizzy and T.I.
8. T.I. Got Married And He’s Returning To Jail
Speaking of Tip, the MC’s had a rough year. After entering jail, serving his time and leaving jail in 2009 for weapons charges, he and his wife Tiny—the two were married this year—were both arrested for drug charges in September 2010. And while Tip’s charges were dropped, Tiny’s weren’t and the MC was sentenced to 11 months and is turning himself in any day now.
+ Drake’s The Man
Two points for the obvious(ly a bit late). When Wayne entered Riker’s Island, Drizzy was on the verge of releasing his debut album Thank Me Later. Following the “9AM in Dallas” freestyle, where the MC rhymed that he didn’t care if he did the numbers everyone predicted, Drake made critics eat their words and became even more ubiquitous, if that was possible. From guesting on Rick Ross’ “Aston Martin Music” to Diddy’s “Loving You No More,” Drizzy even headlined his first tour entitled Light Dreams and Nightmares and if we’re lucky … Wayne might stop by his final date in Las Vegas. *fingers crossed*
It’s “Welcome Home Weezy” week at MTV News. Check back every day for articles, updates, blog posts and more as we track the countdown to the Carter’s homecoming. Stay tuned!
What else did Lil Wayne miss while he was away? Tweet us at @MTVRapFix or tell us in a comment below!