Hip hop’s 50th anniversary celebration at the ESSENCE Festival wouldn’t be complete without one of Louisiana’s all-time greatest rappers.
The annual event, which takes place in New Orleans, waited until the very end to reveal a special guest on the third day of the cultural fest. Yesterday (July 2), Lil Wayne graced the stage inside the Caesars Superdome.
Born and raised in New Orleans, Wayne’s rap career began when he joined fellow native and artist Birdman’s Cash Money Records. The five-time Grammy Award-winning lyricist emerged in the music industry with his unique sound and undeniably talented pen game. “We heard New Orleans had something to say. The best rapper alive takes over,” ESSENCE captioned their Instagram post of Wayne performing “Let the Beat Build.”
Wayne’s audience grew as the “Fireman” performer released chart-topping singles and albums consistently, including The Carter III and The Carter IV. To many, he has cemented his legacy as one of the greatest rappers ever to touch a mic.
The 40-year-old musical legend recently wrapped up his “Welcome To Tha Carter Tour,” presented by Young Money and Rolling Loud, although, another stage fans have previously hope to see Wayne on is a Verzuz one. When asked about a potential appearance, Wayne shared he doesn’t see any competition that could potentially match up with him on stage.
“I was interested in Mixtape Weezy going against Lil Wayne. That would have been crazy,” he told Rolling Stone in June. “Yeah. What other artists you think? There ain’t no other artist that can stand on the stage next to me, bro. I’m sorry.” However, Wayne did note one stage he wouldn’t mind performing on: The Super Bowl halftime show. “I’d kill that s**t,” he said. “That’d be one of the first Super Bowls that they’ll be like, ‘Both teams were out on the field watching the halftime show.'”
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