To choose a favourite mixtape of mine is hard but if I have to go for one, it would be Lil Wayne’s Dedication 2, because that was the mixtape that made me fuck with Lil Wayne while everyone else was saying how dope he was.
This was an era when The Game was coming off that G-Unit shit and I was getting more into music. I was at summer school – actually, I had been kicked out of summer school for fighting and scrapping – and the teacher used to allow me to listen to an iPod that was playing Dedication 2, as long as I sat on the corner and shut the fuck up! I got into a fight the third to last day of summer school but listening to Dedication 2 made me stop whooping somebody’s ass, because I had the headphones in bumping that shit.
I grew up on the Hot Boys and I remember Tha Block Is Hot, the old school Wayne. I had been on Lil Wayne from early. Listening to Dedication 2 the first time, I thought ‘man, this nigga going harder than a bitch!’ He could tell you in a million different ways how he’s gonna shoot you. Niggas used to say that Lil Wayne raps all over the place but I can kind of relate with the way he can be off. So when he be talking he’s painting pictures and I can see that shit.
When Dedication 2, I was still trying to figure out what the fuck I wanted to do, and I had just moved out to the new summer school where everybody was different. They looked at me like an outcast because of the type of nigga I was and I had to adjust.
I was a completely different type of nigga so instead of fighting I’ll have my headphones on, jamming Wayne. I been wanted to be a rapper; really, mixtapes are what made me want to be a rapper because at the time albums were getting dry and shit, and I think I heard some of the best hip-hop of my life on mixtapes.
Through Dedication 2 I discovered people like Kidd Kidd and I had been fucking with Juelz Santana but I started messing him more because he was dropping joints with Lil Wayne. Everybody was dropping their shit quick but he was putting out quality every time and it was real shit. He went hard as hell everytime, on every mixtape. Even if you don’t count the number and you count the mixtapes he was dropping at that time, that’s a lot more than what a lot of rappers can do.
I remember the cover of the tape being black and white and red, abstract and it looked like somebody sketched it. I ain’t gonna lie, I downloaded it on some bootleg shit and I didn’t have the cover to look at but if I had to look it now I’d probably say ‘man, Lil Wayne did it again!’
You can’t tell me that every song on the tape wasn’t a classic, but if I had to pick one as my favourite, I like ‘Cannon’, the joint with Freeway. Every rhyme went hard. But then there are so many classics on that joint that it’s kinda unfair to choose one!
If I had to put a price on Dedication 2…I’m not gonna lie, I’d probably still burn that bitch! But if I saw Lil Wayne on the block or something handing out mixtapes, I’d probably give him a quick $5.
Dedication 2 in three words? It. Go. Hard. That’s all I have to say about it.
Words by Maxo Kream.