This article originally appeared on Noisey US
Day 357: "6 Foot 7 Foot" feat. Cory Gunz – Tha Carter IV, 2010
The best Lil Wayne song is "6 Foot 7 Foot." The reason for this is simple. Of all the flashes of brilliance that Lil Wayne has shown in his career, there is none more electrifying, none more worthy to be remembered by, none more objectively perfect than "real Gs move in silence like lasagne."
Everyone knows that this is the best Lil Wayne lyric. It's the one that casual fans can recite back and the one that serious fans point to when proving his genius. It encapsulates exactly what makes Lil Wayne so distinctively good. For one, it's instantly familiar. It's grounded in a structure anyone could recognise, one that has probably popped up, without additional commentary needed, in a hundred other rap songs: "real gangsters move in silence." OK, the listener thinks, here's Lil Wayne completing his bar with some standard Lil Wayne tough talk, and that always feels good. The line leading up to this one is a solid punchline – "paper chasin', tell that paper 'look, I'm right behind ya'" – so there's not much pressure on this one. And then the finisher lands, twisting the whole focus of the line: "like lasagne."
What Lil Wayne fans love most of all about Lil Wayne is the way his mind creates a wild free-associative map of references that never come up anywhere else in music. You'll never hear a song about the Geico caveman ads unless you listen to Lil Wayne (maybe you would if you were at a Geico company party circa 2005; I guess I don't know your life). Just the fact that Lil Wayne would bring lasagne into the song is kind of wacky; the fact that he would make a joke about the way lasagne is spelled is pretty crazy; the fact that the joke is a riff on the statement you previously heard and dismissed as run of the mill is fucking galaxy-brain, mind-expanding, consciousness-altering rewiring of what is possible with the English language.
"Real Gs move in silence like lasagne": It's since taken on a life as a saying of its own. It is the sickest rap punchline known to man. They are still studying it in laboratories to understand its potency.
Yet while real Gs move in silence like lasagne, this song was anything but quiet. It served as Lil Wayne's announcement of his return from jail, the first song off a promised Carter IV and the first song he'd recorded since he was released. In the same way that "A Milli" declared his intentions for Tha Carter III, this song laid out the terms of Lil Wayne's comeback. Of course, the fact that those terms were a near-literal remake of "A Milli" – it has the same producer, Bangladesh, the same featured guest, Cory Gunz, and the same formula of rapid-fire rap broken up by a sample – did not bode particularly well for originality. At the time, I certainly interpreted it that way. But although "6 Foot 7 Foot" doesn't necessarily win points for musical innovation, it does stand as a library of some of Lil Wayne's best punchlines. Over the years, his writing here has held up as more memorable than just about anywhere else.
"A Milli" might be a better display of all-out rap prowess and flow, but "6 Foot 7 Foot" coined more quotables. When you think of iconic Lil Wayne lyrics, you probably think of something from this song. These bars are so hard that people still tweet them out constantly. Let's just admire some of the best ones: "you don't wanna start Weezy 'cause the F is for finisher"; "black and white diamonds, fuck segregation"; "talking to myself because I am my own consultant / married to the money, fuck the world, that's adultery"; "mind so sharp I fuck around and cut my head off"; "try me and run into a wall outfielder"; "I speak the truth but I guess that's a foreign language to y'all"; "I got through that sentence like a subject and a predicate." Wow.
Lil Wayne does, technically, warn us to excuse his charisma. We should be prepared for how much he's about to throw at us. But what could prepare you? He'd been setting up the kill shot for a literal decade and a half. The more time I've spent trying to explain Lil Wayne with A Year of Lil Wayne, the more I've found that it's a pointless exercise. At best, it usually just involves pointing to his accomplishments with your jaw on the floor and asking other people to share in your amazement. "6 Foot 7 Foot" is a perfect example. It's just impressive. What else is there to say? Lil Wayne says it all himself: "so misunderstood but what's a world without enigma?" You want to understand Lil Wayne? Lean into the unknowable. Embrace the jokes, and take the boasts seriously. Cook up a nice big lasagne, and listen to this song.
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