Recently, Lil Wayne sat down with Brandon Marshall, Chad “Ochocinco” Johnson, Pac-Man Jones, and Omar Kelly for their “I Am Athlete” podcast, where he opened up about his extensive catalog, long-standing relationships, and (of course) sports, specifically in regards to his favorite NFL team. At one point, Kelly asked the New Orleans legend about what led to his signing Drake and Nicki Minaj, both of whom became two of hip hop’s biggest stars:
“I seen potential … you can see potential in people, but that’s when I saw way more than just potential. You know what I mean? When Drake‘s music was brought to me from the homie Jas [Prince] my bro, it was about rap. You know, and I was like, ‘this dude sound different.’ What I loved about him was that he was sounding just as dope as we were — when I say we, us, who talking about the streets, and what we done came from, and what we doing … I told him, I was like, ‘you literally could make working in a cubicle, like your everyday job is working in a cubicle … you know how to make that sound like the dopest thing in the world to do.”
He continued by bringing up the moment where he realized that Drake was just as adept with his harmonies as he was with his lyricism:
“…And then one day I heard, [mimics Drake‘s singing], ‘what the fuck was that?’ And I was like, I think it was on the hook, and I remember asking Mack [Maine] like, ‘who that is on the hook?’ He was like, ‘that’s him too.’ And I was like, ‘you sing?'”
Drake and Nicki Minaj signed to Young Money Entertainment in 2009. Both of their debut LPs — Thank Me Later and Pink Friday, respective — arrived the following year and quickly catapulted both artists into hip hop’s upper echelon.
Press play on Lil Wayne‘s full sit-down with “I Am Athlete” below.
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