Though Lil Wayne declared himself “The Best Rapper Alive” in 2005 with the release Tha Carter II, which turned into a short-lived bout with JAY-Z, using a year-old promotional clip for his signature Bumbu rum he crown’s Hov with the greatest of all-time title.
“Who’s the GOAT to you? I got Jay!” Wayne captioned on the clip.
By this time, it shouldn’t be a surprise that Lil Wayne hails Jigga as the greatest. The love and respect the two Carters share between each other is evident.
Aside from helping Weezy settle his $14 million tax debt in March, the Roc Nation founder previously credited Wayne for lighting the fire under him that resulted in his No. 1 album The Blueprint 3 in 2009. At one point, the Brooklyn rap mogul made an attempt to sign him to Roc-A-Fella Records for $175,000.
The loving camaraderie didn’t come without incident, however. Lil Wayne always showed major love to JAY-Z because that is his favorite rapper. When JAY announced his retirement following the release of 2003’s The Black Album, the Young Money CEO quickly assumed the best role with his song “Best Rapper Alive.” On his 2006 comeback album Kingdom Come, JAY took issue with Weezy’s proclamation on the track “Trouble.”
Shortly after Kingdom Come‘s release, Wayne did an interview with Complex saying he was better than JAY-Z.
“I don’t like what he’s saying about how he had to come back because Hip Hop’s dead and we need him,” Lil Tunechi said in the interview with Complex. “What the fuck do you mean? If anything it’s reborn, so he’s probably having a problem with that. You left on a good note, and all of the artists were saying, ‘Yo, this is JAY’s house. He’s the best.’ Now he comes back and still thinks it’s his house. It’s not your house anymore, and I’m better than you.”
During the summer of 2007, Hov further took shots at Weezy on T.I.’s “Watch What You Say To Me.” By the end of the year, Wayne apologized and the two seemingly made amends when the New Orleans bred rapper appeared on “Hello Brooklyn 2.0” off American Gangster.
Now, Lil Wayne considers his idol JAY-Z to be a close friend.