In a few short weeks, Lil Wayne, 35, will release his long delayed album, Tha Carter V, but a conversation with Billboard’s Dan Rys revealed how close this album – and every release Weezy ever put out – didn’t happen. When the rapper was just 12 years old, according to the Billboard cover story, he found a gun in his mother’s house and shot himself in the chest. He just barely missed his heart and in the past, he’s played this incident off as an accident. But on a verse he played for Rys, he admits that it was a suicide attempt, “undertaken after his mother told him he would no longer be allowed to rap.”
The track, which samples Sampha’s 2013 song “Indecision,” will be the album’s outro, and Wayne added new lyrics following the suicides of Kate Space and Anthony Bourdain. “He just told me one day that he was ready to address it now,” said Mack Maine, president of Young Money Entertainment. “Just being an adult, reaching a level of maturity and comfort where it’s like, ‘I want to talk about this because I know a lot of people out here might be going through that.’ ”
After recovering from the gunshot wound, his mother allowed him to pursue a rap career so as long as he didn’t swear. His 1999 debut, Tha Block Is Hot, is without a single profanity. Lil Wayne previously mentioned the incident in rhyme, addressing his mother on “London Roads,” off of 2015’s Free Weezy Album. Ms. Cita, I remember goin’ in your gun drawer/Puttin’ it to my chest and missin’ my heart by centimeters, oh Lord.”
He also admitted that he attempted suicide during a guest verse on Solange’s 2016 song, “Mad.” “And when I attempted suicide, I didn’t die/I remember how mad I was on that day/Man, you gotta let it go before it get up in the way/Let it go, let it go.”
Speaking of letting it go, it seems that Lil Wayne and Birdman, 49, have finally settled their long-standing legal beef. Weezy and his father figure had a falling out. Tha Carter V was announced in late 2012, and was scheduled to come out in Dec. 2014, but five days before its release, Wayne attacked Birdman and Cash Money Records. He sued Birdman and Cash Money in 2015 for $51 million, alleging breach of contract, failure to pay royalties and withholding advances.
In June 2018, Cash Money and Lil Wayne settled their legal beef for an undisclosed sum. Tha Carter V, the highly anticipated album, will be his first without the Cash Money logo on it. Despite this split, Wayne and Birdman are back to talking every day, though their relationship has changed. “Not even just with him, but my relationships with a lot of people have become different, just because of how different I work now,” Weezy says. “I’m submerged in everything about myself, trying to be better at who I am. It’s something where you have to cut some things off.”