A Year of Lil Wayne: K Is for Key, P Is for Paper

Day 238: “Over Here Hustlin'” – Birdman and Lil Wayne, Like Father, Like Son, 2006

One thing Lil Wayne was both particularly good at and particularly interested in doing circa 2005-2007 (it’s there throughout, but his use of the technique really peaked during this period) was using consonance—that is, the repetition of hard consonants—to add percussion to tracks. “Over Here Hustlin'” is a great example. Look at this whole series of “K” and “J” sounds in his first verse:

I got the key to the boat, I got the key to the jet
I got the key to success, get money invest
Re-up with the rest. I got a sweeter connect
That means my weed is the best, junkie, even the stress
OK, the coupe is ridiculous and the jeep is a mess
Let’s call my bullets a lump, I put ’em deep in your neck
Adam’s apple meet banana clip
You know my script, I just get my chips and then I dip
And then I dip
They say the bullshit walks, the money talks
So I don’t answer, I don’t answer unless the money calls

He does the same thing to open his final verse with the “P” sounds in “paper” while also painting an incredibly vivid tableau:

Paper, paper. Paper: All I need is paper
Green paper, white chalk, yellow tape’ll
Make your shirt look like you got on the butcher’s apron
Go ahead and make the steak then, bitch nigga

How cool does that sound? Pretty cool—and even cooler when you consider that the key to success and to all that paper was the way that he literally was capable of saying the words.

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