Wednesday, April 8, 2009
Here's an example of how writers can be influenced by other creative people. I've always loved Lil Wayne (and, let's face it, he deserves a place in pop culture history for inventing the phrase "bling bling" alone). But I really was inspired by two things he said in his recent Rolling Stone cover story.
1) As an author who has twice published with huge multinational conglomerates, I could relate to his frustration with feeling like he was put on the shelf at his record label. His response was to take his career in his own hands and work as much as possible, doing guest spots on other people's songs and recording numerous mixtapes, in order to increase his visibility.
"I said [to the label], "...[If] you're not going to treat me like your biggest artist, I must sell myself. If every artist has a thing, my thing is going is going to be my fucking talent. That's the rarity. My niche, that you're going to sell for me, is that he's the talentedest nigga ever. It's not my face, not what I wear. You're going to sell that this nigga is great every time. Every song that comes through for clearance, you clear that motherfucker. Every mixtape you hear about, you shut up. When it's time to drop [my next album]. watch what happens."
Of course, Tha Carter III moved one-milli in it's first week, including one copy to me.
2) I also liked Wayne's observations about "greatness":
"I always believe that to be the best, you have to smell like the best, dress like the best, act like the best. When you throw your trash in the garbage can, it has to be better than anyone else who ever threw trash in the garbage can. Michael Jordan is that type of person. Tiger Woods. Roger Federer. Muhammad Ali. Obama. Frank Sinatra. John Kennedy. Basquiat. I study those people. What the hell did they do to be so great? And the answer? They were just them."
For more of Wayne's wisdom, check out the issue.