Young Money boss Emcee Lil Wayne has become the first hip-hop artist since the late Tupac Shakur to have a number one debut album while incarcerated.
According to reports, Wayne’s recently released I Am Not A Human Being earned him the accolade.
The rapper, who’s on track to be released Thursday after serving eight months in a gun case, is the first artist in 15 years to release a No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 chart while serving a sentence. His “I Am Not a Human Being” spent a week in the top slot and has sold more than 323,000 copies since its Sept. 27 release, according to Nielsen SoundScan. Several rappers have put out albums while locked up; the late Shakur became the first to hit number one with 1995’s “Me Against the World,” released while he was imprisoned on a sexual assault conviction. Some have recorded songs behind bars.
Lil Wayne’s feat behind bars impressed former Death Row Records head Marion “Suge” Knight, who signed Shakur to the now-defunct, legendary label, after the release of Me Against the World. “It was great that they had that communication with fans,” Knight told Billboard, while adding that due to technology, during the 1990’s, “the world stopped” for an artist serving time behind bars.
Lil Wayne is expected to be released from Rikers Island on November 4th.