Lil Wayne, heavyweight rapper and outside-the-box lyricist, is celebrating his 29th birthday Tuesday.

Lil Wayne, even after serving an eight-month prison sentence in New York for criminal possession of a weapon, has encountered one of the most successful years of his music career. His ninth studio album, Tha Carter IV, released last month, has been a huge hit, selling close to a million copies in its first week.

His most successful album to date is the Tha Carter III, released in 2008, which has sold close to four million copies.

View the slideshow to see Wayne amid some of his successes and setbacks over recent years.