PRIESTLY KING. MILITARY GENERAL. WARRIOR. HERO. SINGING SHEPHERD BOY…huh?
That’s a common response when reflecting on the humble beginnings of King David from the Bible. But why does one of the fiercest gladiators long to be remembered as one of the “sweet psalmist of Israel”? (2 Samuel 23:1) It’s simple: being God’s unseen worshipper was more important than all the other titles. So what does that have to do with Lil Wayne?
Rappers can be seen as those called to be preachers for God. They are people who were made to deliver words to sway a generation. However, is that “anointed one” going to rap lyrics about a life of pleasure and power, or life of redemption and surrender? Either way, it must be seen, church kids are following Lil Wayne, and I haven’t seen anyone trying to remix the Book of Psalms. But who is the better choice to follow?
Since King David’s reputation precedes him with his life recorded in 3 books (1 & 2 Samuel, and 1 Chronicles); let’s look at Lil Wayne’s life first. Born Dwayne Michael Carter Jr. in the Hollygrove section of New Orleans, LA, it seemed he lived a lifetime before released his first record.
By age 2, his parents were divorced and his biological dad deserted their family. Before he turned 10, with sheer endurance, he became known by Cash Money Records after performing at their parties. By age 11, he excelled in school, but had shot himself accidentally after he literally “rapped” himself into a record deal with Cash Money on their answering machine. However, his step-dad, Reginald McDonald, wouldn’t let him work with Cash Money Records. But a chain of events would change Wayne’s destiny. By age 15, he was taken out of school by his mom and got his GED, juggling fatherhood and the untimely murder of his stepfather.
INSERT Bryan “Birdman” Williams. Birdman took on two fatherless children: Lil Wayne and B.G. aka Baby Gangsta (whose father was also murdered) and formed the Hot Boys, including their “big brother” rapper, Juvenile. They exploded on the scene, upstaging older hip hop artists and gaining the fans of their age. Yet when B.G. got arrested and Juvenile left disgruntled over royalties, the roster seemed to be thinning out…Lil Wayne took his place and became a solo artist. To top it off, currently he has been reportedly offered a $150 million dollar contract with Cash Money, the largest music deal in American history. Even with the long-haired-tattooed-diamond-crusted-teeth-saggy-jean persona, Lil Wayne has left an impression, whether people listen to him or not.
What’s really interesting is that the backgrounds of King David & Lil Wayne are similar. They both lived under the shadow of a father who didn’t want them, and turned to a larger-than-life father figure. They pursued music at a very young age and became the lyrical savant of their time. They both face near-death experiences at a young age, and led the overlooked disgruntled of their generation into an army of leaders (whether rappers or fighters). And they had a team of lyricists around them to magnify their eye for talent. It almost seemed they could have been friends….
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