The New Orleans rap veteran was asked about Weezy’s G.O.A.T. rapper pick on the red carpet at the 2023 BMI R&B/Hip Hop Awards in Miami on Wednesday (September 6), where he argued that his former Cash Money labelmate — not Hov — is the best MC to ever grace the mic.
“We’ve argued over the years. He say JAY-Z the G.O.A.T., I say he the G.O.A.T.,” he said. “My lil’ bro the greatest rapper of all time. He know how I feel about that.”
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Despite confidently declaring himself “The Best Rapper Alive” on his 2005 album Tha Carter II, Lil Wayne has frequently given it up for JAY-Z over the years.
Back in 2020, the Young Money boss credited Hov’s 1999 album Vol. 3… Life and Times of S. Carter with having a huge impact on him, to the point that he has lyrics from the record permanently inked on his body.
“It was the first album where I actually [got] the car that the rapper was talking about. That was my album,” he said in an interview with Rolling Stone.
“Also, Jay talked so crazy. He went bananas on that album. I got lyrics from the album tattooed on me and shit. I have songs that are remakes of spinoffs of songs from that album, you know?”
Jigga’s influence is so great that he even inspired Wayne to switch up his entire approach to writing rhymes.
“The moment I heard [JAY-Z didn’t write down his lyrics on paper] I stopped. You could ask my boy,” he said on The Pivot Podcast earlier this year. “We went in the studio and we did ‘10,000 Bars’ and that was the last time I rapped anything off of a paper.”
Despite’s Juvenile’s protests, Lil Wayne is hardly alone in his assertion that JAY-Z is the G.O.A.T. rapper. Earlier this year, the Roc Nation mogul was crowned the Greatest Rapper of All Time by Billboard and VIBE.
The publications argued their case by citing Hov’s commercial success, critical acclaim, cultural impact and entrepreneurial achievements, along with his almost three-decade longevity.
“Man, who the hell is before me?” Tunechi questioned during an interview with Zane Lowe in February. “Was the list including all Hip Hop, like before and after as well? I can deal with that.”
He added: “I will tell you that I am a muthafuckin’ one. Everybody whose names you named, they also know I’m number one. Go ask ’em. They know what it is.”