When people cite Lil Wayne as the mixtape world's be-all-end-all, it's likely the DJ Drama-hosted Dedication series is among the dominant reasons as to why. And for many, the classic series reached a major turning point with the Dedication 2, released fourteen years ago all the way back in 2006. For some context, this period arose between Weezy's Carter II and Carter III, an era during which he became hellbent on solidifying himself as the best rapper alive. In order to achieve that ambitious goal, Weezy opted to take things back to basics, sharpening his flow and firing off a barrage of bars.
Nowhere was that more evident on the titular track. Produced by Kanye West, who looks to Quentin Tarantino's Kill Bill for musical inspiration, "Dedication 2" is as simple a premise as it gets. A straightforward sample-based instrumental, brief in runtime, designed as the backdrop for a hungry emcee. Far removed from the infectious minimalism of Mannie Fresh, Weezy took to Ye's beat with the swagger of a practiced emcee, raising the bar with an absolutely effortless flow. "Wake up motherfuckers it's Weezy, you got a problem?" he declares. "Heads to them Katrina victims, we still mobbin', shiny black coupe at night look like a goblin."
Those who hold the tape in high regard likely remember "Dedication 2" -- should you count yourself among that particular group, does this one bring back any nostalgic memories? Sound off in the comments below, and happy anniversary to one of hip-hop's defining mixtapes.
Wake up motherfuckers it's Weezy, you got a problem?
Heads to them Katrina victims, we still mobbin'
Shiny black coupe at night look like a goblin
AK on the backseat, baby it's so vivrant