Lil Wayne’s highly-anticipated album, “Tha Carter V,” should have been out in 2014 but disagreements with Birdman and the Cash Money Record label have led to Lil Wayne’s album being delayed multiple times.
During an interview with the Rap Radar podcast, Lil Wayne’s manager, Cortez Bryant, revealed that Cash Money had the chance to release the album for free. Speaking with Elliott Wilson and B. Dot, Bryant said Weezy never received an advance for the album’s first single, “Believe Me,” but still wanted to move forward with the release of the album.
While waiting on the advance, Wayne went on tour with Drake, but following the tour, Cash Money still didn’t give Weezy his advance money. This led to Wayne coming up with an idea to release the album with some help from Google.
“This was before streaming really hit. We had a deal cut with Google where they were going to back the album and we were really gonna be able to give ‘Carter V’ away for free, streaming,” said Cortez.
According to Bryant, the deal they had in place with Google was “lucrative” but Birdman and his brother Ronald “Slim” Williams, label co-founder, didn’t understand it.
“The deal was lucrative. When I presented it to Slim and Baby, they didn’t get it. They didn’t get streaming. They went to the powers that be, the label was against it because they hadn’t put their hands in the [streaming services’] pockets yet, they had no control over it, and they basically told me we can’t put the album out. And when I had to tell Wayne that, he was like…what? He was like, ‘You can’t stop me, you can’t hold me back, my fans don’t deserve this and I’m about to air it out.'”
Although Lil Wayne has released other albums such as the “Free Weezy Album” while waiting for the release of “Tha Carter V,” don’t expect him to take matters into his own hands again. After releasing the “Free Weezy Album” with Jay Z through Tidal, Bryant said he doesn’t want to get hit with another cease-and-desist.
As fans wait for the album to release, just know that the album is finished and Wayne says it sounds great. “I popped it in, and I was like, it’s still so much better than everything I’ve ever heard,” Wayne told the New York Times.