‘My Favourite Mixtape’ makes a welcome return after a short hiatus, and this week we asked Toronto spitter, Jazz Cartier, about the impact his favourite mixtape has had on him….
My favourite mixtape ever has to be Da Drought 3 by Lil Wayne, because, straight from the intro, his first two bars are: “prosthetic king of the jungle, dreadlocks swing on my back like Rapunzel”. The longer my own hair gets and I look in the mirror, I think about those bars, and Lil Wayne is definitely the reason why I grew my dreads out. The whole tape itself was just legendary; he snapped on every single song.
I think I was in seventh grade in Kuwait (my parents moved me around a lot as a kid), and I came across the tape through Datpiff and I was already a huge Wayne fan. But when I heard Da Drought 3, it changed my life – it made me want to rap and go crazy.
I knew he would be a fucking superstar after that tape and, low and behold, he was. He was popular within hip-hop culture, but after that tape he was taken to A-list level. Before Da Drought 3, he was Lil Wayne trying to establish himself outside of the Hot Boys and the frontier artists of Cash Money but after that, he was just Lil Wayne. There’s no Hot Boys, no Cash Money, and he was a giant all on his own.
On the ‘Upgrade U’ freestyle, he said “and I just signed a chick named Nicki Minaj”, and that was the first time I had heard Nicki Minaj’s name and, low and behold, she is one of the biggest female hip-hop artists of all time. I never had a physical copy but I still want one; if anyone has a copy, let me know and I’ll buy it from you for $5! I mean, I’m just being cheap saying $5 but if I had to really pay for it, considering how much it means to me, I would pay $500 for a physical copy. Only to have it and have Lil Wayne sign it, meaning that it would be worth more.
You know what’s crazy about the mixtape cover? This was back in the day when an artist would put out a mixtape, but then there would be about 50 covers, and Wayne was just the king of that shit. But when I look at the real one, I just think of it being legendary. The New Orleans symbol next to the title is special to me – because I call myself Jacuzzi Lafleur – and the symbols are where the name comes from.
I’m not even going to lie, this mixtape is what shaped me and it is such a legendary cover. I had a different cover to the original – my one had a skull on it – and it’s hard to say which I prefer. They both fit the mood of the project, but the original is OG.
It’s hard to say if that was peak Lil Wayne, because Tha Carter III came out after that and he was in a completely new and scary zone. If he never went to jail he would probably still be in the same zone. He was a rock star and, being without stuff like lean and weed for so long while he was in jail, being sober kind of took away what elevated him to a whole new height. But that might have been a sign that he should probably stop, but I still love Lil Wayne even to this day. He is, hands down, one of the best.
My favourite song on Da Drought 3 is ‘If I Ruled the World’, because he took Nas’ song and made it Lil Wayne. Oh my God, he snaps! He’s like: “Imagine waking up in the streets with no pistols blasting, if the wind isn’t there there’s no trial’. He just takes New Orleans and makes it a movie. He also said: “If you can’t come up with half, we’ll give you half of your kid”. Like, who comes with that shit? Come on, bro.
I would say, in three words, that Da Drought 3 is the best ever.
Words by Jazz Cartier.