Lil Wayne became MTV's very first Hottest MC in the Game back in 2007. Weezy — with no album, a million mixtape tracks and guest appearances and a palpable buzz as big as the Louisiana Superdome — dominated the list, beating out T.I. and the Game for top spot.
Wayne's rhymes were out of control and his impact was downright brutal, transcending the hip-hop genre. Weezy had a moment where he was striking everyone with his music. That moment has lasted more than two years now. And as we move into the 2009 Hottest MCs in the Game list, Wayne — who placed third behind Kanye West and Jay-Z in 2008 — is aiming to get his crown back. (To see what it takes to make the list, check out our Hottest MCs criteria.)
"Cash Money is the hottest label right now, because those guys don't stop working," said Jay Sean, CMR's newest find. "Birdman and Lil Wayne are still very hungry. They're the only CEOs you'll see in the club with their artists. Wayne makes all these hits records, and his Young Money label is blowing up as well."
Weezy is putting together his entire package this year. To date, he's had the biggest first week of any artist, rap or otherwise, since Usher's 2004 Confessions LP. Weezy's Tha Carter III still has the numbers to beat, with it's sales of more than a million units the first week. Wayne also just broke the record take of any touring rap artist with $46 million earned during his I Am Music Tour and Young Money Presents: America's Most Wanted Music Festival this past year. Weezy has also spread the love, introducing the world to new superstar Drake.
Now, here come the question marks: Has continuing to do so many guest appearances watered down Wayne's rhymes? And will Wayne be hurt by pushing his new album, Rebirth, back so many times? Artists such as Jay-Z, Rick Ross, Eminem, Jadakiss and Fabolous have all had successful albums this year while Weezy's project has been delayed. Everything will come to light soon when the 2009 list of Hottest MCs is announced.
Who do you think is the Hottest MC in the Game? Don't forget to vote from now through September 21 to have your voice heard.