Why Birdman & Cash Money REALLY Delayed Tha Carter V
A lot has been made of the Lil’ Wayne tweets taking shots at Birdman and Cash Money Records for delaying his much anticipated Tha Carter V album. Personally, I hoped all this was because of a hacked account or at worst a bad publicity stunt to drive up buzz around the long delayed album, but after a couple weeks of he said, she said and beating around the bush by just about everyone involved with Cash Money, it seems like the tweets were all unfortunately real issues hashed out in the worst of public forums.
Now with Lil Wayne jumping on twitter yet again to declare his intentions to quit the game, Birdman again gets the blame. With numerous legal cases pending between Cash Money, Birdman and Lil Wayne, it doesn’t look like the sides will ever be able to truly be able to mend fences, which may mean the end of an era.
I AM NOW DEFENSELESS AND mentally DEFEATED & I leave gracefully and thankful I luh my fanz but I’m dun
— Lil Wayne WEEZY F (@LilTunechi) September 3, 2016
That being the case, and with Birdman shouldering a majority of the heat for what many deem is a pattern of bad business moves by the mogul, I thought I’d look at a few real reasons why Birdman and Cash Money have delayed Tha Carter V indefinitely. Let’s go with 10 to be exact and none of them have to do with Birdman being a bad business man!
10 Real Reasons Birdman Delayed Tha Cater V
10. Where’s The Loyalty
After holding the young boy down for nearly 2 decades and guiding his career to where it is now, Birdman Jr. still had the nerve to call out his mentor/role model/father figure on the worst of all social media. Sure Birdman might have never written a verse for him and maybe he can’t get the credit for the talent he displayed on Da Drought mixtapes or Tha Carter series, but am I the only one that remembers “The Block Is Hot” Wayne? Or Lights Out Wayne? If not for Stunna and his effort to constantly keep Jr. relevant, audiences wouldn’t have stuck around long enough to ever find out about “A Milli” Wayne much less what would come to be Young Money. Birdman had to sense disloyalty in the air and Tha Carter V is a small casualty of this blatant disrespect.
9. Money Over Everything
Isn’t that the motto over there at Cash Money? As of 2014 Lil’ Wayne is worth well over $100 million, with reports saying it lands somewhere between $135-145. There’s absolutely nothing to complain about! Last year alone, even without the album, Wayne grossed $23 million!!! (source: Forbes) After taking a break from Cash Money that dipped to $15 million in 2015.
8. Short Term Memory
How quickly you forget. Maybe Birdman noticed that Wayne forgot who the boss really was. It wasn’t that long ago that Juvenile, B.G., Turk and even the likes of Mannie Fresh were celebrated names in Hip-Hop. Once they questioned the business ethic of the heads in charge things went downhill. No one has truly had success once they’ve left Birdman. I can bet that even with Wayne, it’s a gamble he’s willing to take. Plus with a $110 million personal net worth and Drake and Nicki still pulling in money, he’s not hurting. Birdman pulled in $18 million dollars in 2015!
7. No Forgiveness
I don’t think Birdman will ever forgive Weezy for making him sign someone like Bow Wow. You get the feeling Wayne had a lot of say on signings like Busta Rhymes and Mystikal and after putting out so much money there has been absolutely no return on investment. Cash Money paid for videos and I’m sure hefty advances but no albums. That’s in addition to having Ace Hood & DJ Khaled, as well as Young Money artists like Jae Millz, Cory Gunz, Gudda Guda and the list goes on, that really have no real future in Hip-Hop.
6. Get Your Boy
Tyga, another Young Money artst came out months ago talking shit about the label in a Vibe magazine interview. He called out members of Young Money saying they were fake and discussed money issues. Birdman has never been too keen about that sort of behavior and since Tyga is technically Wayne’s artist he probably expected Wayne to handle that swiftly. While Mack Maine responded via twitter, Wayne’s silence spoke volumes.
5. Numbers Don’t Lie
Lil’ Wayne’s last album, I Am Not A Human Being II sold just 217K copies in its first week. That was even with the release of four singles before the album hit stores, four luke warm singles including “No Worries,” “My Homies Still” and “Rich As Fuck.” The album overall was pretty weak and while people don’t expect Tha Carter, they still expect great music. That wasn’t the case and although the album was certified gold, it never went platinum. Tha Carter IV nearly went platinum in a week and the original I Am Not A Human Being went platinum and it’s physical release was number one on the charts even though it was released while he was incarcerated! I get it, sales are down, but that shouldn’t be the case if you’re Wayne. The little joint album Wayne put out with 2 Chainz this year under the ColleGrove name only sold 50K copies in it’s first week. It’s safe to say Wayne isn’t the same attraction he once was.
4. Numbers Don’t Lie pt. 2
Lil’ Wayne’s last crew release, Young Money Rise of An Empire moved just 32k units in March 2014 when it was released. There’s absolutely no justifying that for an album that featured Lil’ Wayne, Nicki Minaj, Drake, Tyga and new signee Euro. Each one of those were featured on singles as well, which included “We Alright,” “Senile,” “Trophies,” and “Looking Ass.” Everyone’s albums got pushed back to focus on the Young Money album and it proved to be a huge setback for everyone. Three videos paid for and the album hasn’t even cleared 100k in sales at last check. There wasn’t even a tour and Euro, the guy the album was really supposed to propel, has pretty much faded from… everything.
Bad album, poor sales. That falls on Wayne!
3. I Can Do Bad By Myself
Birdman’s Rich Gang album in 2013 didn’t do amazing numbers either but I think it also made Birdman a bit hungrier. He scaled back on people in the circle and Rich Gang became essentially just Birdman, Rich Homie Quan and Young Thug. Quan & Thug were signed to a management deals with Rich Gang but essentially they are fresh faces that can keep the Cash Money empire relevant. Additionally, their single, “Lifestyle” was the biggest record from anyone on YMCMB all year. The trio released a mixtape as well, that was well received. If Birdman has had a better year with Thug and Rich Homie, than there’s really no rush for a Tha Carter V. Thug and Rich Homie are no longer part of that Cash Money circle, but Birdman just wrapped up the first season of his BET reality show Music Moguls. Birdman also just signed a deal with Apple Music for a Cash Money Documentary. And with Drake and Nicki Minaj still under contract for multiple albums, Birdman is good.
2. Wayne’s lost his focus
First Pusha T disrespectfully trashed Wayne on a record. Wayne didn’t even release a comeback line on a track as he’s done in the past. Then Kendrick didn’t mention him on the “Control” verse and he didn’t bother making his own version, not even for a mixtape. Then, Wayne released a song called “D’usse” shouting out Jay-Z’s cognac, knowing damn well the only liquor Cash Money can be affiliated with is that GT Vodka. Wayne has also indicated that Tha Carter V will be his final solo album. Early retirement makes no sense for the 33 year old, who still has a lot to accomplish in this business. And then Wayne hasn’t appeared on any of Drake’s new music. No verse on Views, nothing on What A Time To Be Alive. Is he even working? All of these could be forgiven but having these in addition to the number one reason were defining reasons Birdman continued to push back Tha Carter V.
1. Is That You Wayne???
Face it, this just hasn’t been the same Lil’ Wayne that brought you Da Drought or Carter III or even Carter IV. Let’s recap the singles he’s released ahead of this new album. First there was, “Believe Me,” which featured Drake. Of all the songs the pair have released, this is the least favorable by far. And of all the Drake guest appearances, this will be the first you forget. Next, came “Krazy,” for which he would release a video. It sounded like leftovers from the I Am Not A Human Being II album and correctly created absolutely zero buzz. He came back with “Grindin'” once again featuring Drake. While it was a better release than the first two singles it wasn’t a proven hit and lyrically it did little to remove the taste of the earlier singles from disappointed fans. No video would be released either. Later he released “Gotti” featuring The Lox. This was the best song we’ve heard from Wayne in years but for whatever reason it wasn’t pushed and eventually wasn’t serviced to radio. Finally, in November during the American Music Awards he premiered his fifth single from the project, titled, “Start A Fire” featuring Christina Millian. The song is cool, but the performance was lackluster and ultimately topped by Nicki Minaj who took the stage immediately after him. Nicki’s Pinkprint album would be released in December! Even his 2015 mixtape release, No Ceilings 2 was quite yawn worthy.
Wayne also announced that Tha Carter V would be released in two parts because he had 31 songs that would make the album. Surely, he could’ve shrunk that down to just the best 17 tracks, but I guess that would be Birdman stifling his creativity again. I think by then fans had already checked out anyway. The music isn’t what we’ve come to expect and honestly his spot has been surpassed in the ranks by the likes of Kendrick Lamar, J Cole, Big K.R.I.T. and even 2 album 2014, Rick Ross.