I’ve already touched a little on my love for Cash Money back in the late 90s and early 2000s, this is when it all changed. I started to think about this story as I was driving the other day with my Cash Money (all the old albums) playlist on shuffle. Between all the bouncing and rapping, I suddenly remembered that moment.
Wayne’s second album Lights Out had dropped and like Tha Block Is Hot, I made that purchase immediately. I remember watching BET and MTV seeing the first single, Get Off The Corner video every now and then. They never played that joint enough for me. Get Off The Corner was the safe choice to be the first single of the album but in reality, that was a good, not great track when comparing to other joints on Lights Out. The video was more of a continuation of “We on Fire” with Wayne running from the law. Thats all good, Juvenile’s in the video, life is good, the music in my ear even better and then…….our cable got cut off.
Shit. How am I suppose to see my favorite videos now, I thought. Nothing I can do at that point, I’m in middle school. In the meantime, I’m listening to music even more now and I’m blasting the hell out of Lights Out. Its a great album, on par with his debut, Tha Block Is Hot. That green CD stayed spinning in my brother’s boombox above the TV. My initial favorites was probably Hit U Up, Shine (both ft. Hot Boys) and Act A Ass (ft BG).
During this time, I started to think every now and then what new Wayne videos had come out. I had no idea, I had no cable (for a while). No big deal but this was a thought in the back of my head. I just knew it was going to be one of the Hot Boy-featured joint, Hit U Up or Shine. Both were fire, in my opinion. Hots Boys could do no wrong.
Fast forward months later, I go stay with an aunt and my cousins during the weekend. She had cable! I remember getting up early and turning on the TV to BET and MTV. I saw so many new videos (Kurupt’s Its Over is the one other video I remember seeing) and then boom. Lil Wayne’s Shine video came on. OH SHIT! Im up in the room like ‘yeahhhhhhh’. As soon as I get my mouth ready to recite Juve’s verse, ‘Yellow Viper, Yellow Hummer, Yellow Benz…’ Wayne (who has the 2nd verse on the original) starts the song. What the fuck?! I just stood there watching the video, confused. Verse after verse, my head is filled with thoughts, where’s Juve? where’s Turk? where’s B.G?!?! In the video, Mack 10 is on the 2nd verse, Mikkey on the 3rd, Birdman on the 4th. The song was no where near the quality of the original, I was sick to my stomach. I suddenly wasn’t in the mood to watch any more music videos.
Reality hit not too soon after, the Hot Boys were no more.
Talk about a blow to the gut. Everybody can remember the time when they found out their favorite groups broke up and stopped recording together. It sucks. Juvenile, BG and Turk eventually left the label because of money, leaving Wayne on his own. Till this day, I still hate to think of this moment. Cash Money would eventually drop the long awaited 2nd Hot Boys album, Let Em Burn, in 03 but that’s a story for another day.