With Tha Carter 5 (supposedly) releasing soon, we want to take a look back at one of the most controversial albums in Tha Carter series, Tha Carter 3.
Tha Carter 3 may have been one of the most hyped and anticipated albums of the last decade. Coming off the success of the Tha Carter 2 (which is still considered to be the best Carter in most people’s eyes) and the string of mixtapes series such as the Dedication’s and Da Drought’s, Tha Carter 3 was supposed to be the icing on the cake. And in my opinion it was.
Yes, Tha Carter 3 could’ve been better, but let's look at it for what is was. Around the time of Tha Carter 2, Wayne was really gaining the mainstream popularity and success he enjoys now. But the Tha Carter 2 was still kind of gritty, and while hardcore Hip-Hop fans might love that, the mainstream might not accept it as well. Tha Carter 3 had the right balance of classic Wayne mixed with pop features that would rise on the charts and help the album sell. Anytime you get T-Pain on a song around this time period it equaled a hit. Place deep tracks like “Tie My Hands” (featuring Robin Thicke) on the album alongside a Kanye-produced track that featured Wayne’s classic punch line/metaphor flow and I’d say that’s a recipe for selling albums.
Yes Wayne had a lot of features, but that’s common of a Weezy project. And the music was good. Mrs. Officer and Lollipop were a reach-out at the time from his usual style but were they not good songs, especially during that time period? Can you listen to them now? I know people who say theycan and some who say they can’t, but all Wayne did was create an album that he knew would sell. I think he did that without comprising the quality of the music. He still gave us “A Milli”, “Mr. Carter”, and “3peat” along with “The Leak” that featured tracks that were suppose to be on the original Carter 3 until they were leaked. So imagine if those songs were on Tha Carter 3, they were probably better then most songs that made the final Carter 3 roster.
In the end Tha Carter 3 was pushed back so many times and had so much hype that it really had no chance of living up to expectations. People expected it to be the same as his mixtapes, which are hands down better then his albums. Lil Wayne’s most notable works are his mixtapes, and after the long list of beloved mixtapes that he released in between Tha Carter 2 and 3 it would’ve been hard to top that. But in the end Tha Carter 3 as a whole probably is the most known of the Carter’s, and really catapulted Weezy into his superstardom that he’s in now. Some people say Wayne’s flow on the album was cool to them then but not now, some hated it then and still do now, and others loved it all together. I personally think it was a cool album, all together arguably his best studio album because it was so mainstream but still a little gritty. Tha Carter 3 was a modern day classic.