Lil Wayne holds ‘farewell tour’

Lil Wayne emerged as a top-selling musician known for his clever wordplay and risque lyrics, but like rappers before him, he’s staring down a year behind bars at the peak of his career.

Lil Wayne performs in New Orleans

NEW ORLEANS — Lil Wayne emerged as a top-selling musician known for his clever wordplay and risque lyrics, but like rappers before him, he’s staring down a year behind bars at the peak of his career.

The artist returned to his hometown of New Orleans for a performance Monday on what he’s calling his farewell tour. The 27-year-old rapper, whose real name is Dwayne Carter, pleaded guilty in October to a weapons possession charge and will be sentenced Feb. 9. His plea deal calls for a year in jail.

The charge stemmed from a 2007 traffic stop of his tour bus in New York when authorities said they smelled marijuana, and as they approached, he tossed aside a bag with a loaded handgun.

In a separate case, he also faces trial in March on felony drug possession and weapons charges in Yuma County, Ariz. More recently, he had to postpone a show one day after authorities stopped two of his buses in Texas and found marijuana. The case has been referred to the sheriff’s office.

As thousands of fans filed through the New Orleans Arena doors Monday, many said they were disappointed with the rapper’s legal troubles.

“It’s kinda sad, the stereotype and that he fell into it,” said 19-year-old Lee Farrell

Lil Wayne is set to follow some of rap music’s biggest names — from Tupac Shakur, Lil’ Kim, Beanie Sigel and Shyne to New Orleans natives Mystikal and C-Murder — who have served a few months to years behind bars.

Corey “C-Murder” Miller was convicted earlier this year of second-degree murder for the 2002 shooting of a fan. He was sentenced to life in prison.

T.I. reported to a federal prison in May for his conviction on weapons charges. He is expected to serve a year and a day.

“I hope Lil Wayne will follow in T.I.’s footsteps,” said 32-year-old Jed Wright of Metairie, who brought his 11-year-old stepson to the show as a Christmas present. “T.I. promised to turn his life around. Lil Wayne can do the same thing.”

Lil Wayne has been rapping since he was a teenager. Over the past two years, his career has reached new heights with several Grammys and gold records. His “Tha Carter III” topped all album sales in 2008 with 2.8 million copies sold. The record had the No. 1 smash “Lollipop,” and last year he won a Grammy for best rap solo for “A Milli.”

“He’s very unique,” said 18-year-old April Nguyen, of Metairie, La. “He expands his genre, even does rock music, and is constantly reinventing himself.”

Lil Wayne’s next album, “Rebirth,” is due for release Feb. 1. After New Orleans, he is scheduled to play a couple of dates in Texas and another show in southern Louisiana.

Just Posted

N.S. senior whose birthday card request drew international response dies

SYDNEY, N.S. — A Nova Scotia widower who received thousands of birthday… Continue reading

Freedom of expression or personal attack? Nurse appeals fine for Facebook post

REGINA — Saskatchewan’s highest court is to decide what’s next for a… Continue reading

RCMP commissioner says info in FBI probe led to arrest of intelligence director

OTTAWA — An RCMP employee charged with trying to disclose secret information… Continue reading

NDP’s Singh seeks urban support with housing billions, avoids deficit questions

OTTAWA — Jagmeet Singh continued his push to win progressive votes on… Continue reading

B.C. won’t use court ruling as tactic in pipeline battle: environment minister

VANCOUVER — Environment Minister George Heyman says British Columbia can’t stop the… Continue reading

WATCH: 2019 Canada Winter Games will leave a lasting legacy, say organizers

It leaves Red Deer with the infrastructure and confidence to host future such events

Your community calendar

Wednesday Central Alberta Historical Society annual general meeting is 6 p.m. at… Continue reading

N.S. senior whose birthday card request drew international response dies

SYDNEY, N.S. — A Nova Scotia widower who received thousands of birthday… Continue reading

Freedom of expression or personal attack? Nurse appeals fine for Facebook post

REGINA — Saskatchewan’s highest court is to decide what’s next for a… Continue reading

RCMP commissioner says info in FBI probe led to arrest of intelligence director

OTTAWA — An RCMP employee charged with trying to disclose secret information… Continue reading

NDP’s Singh seeks urban support with housing billions, avoids deficit questions

OTTAWA — Jagmeet Singh continued his push to win progressive votes on… Continue reading

B.C. won’t use court ruling as tactic in pipeline battle: environment minister

VANCOUVER — Environment Minister George Heyman says British Columbia can’t stop the… Continue reading

Parties spar over what is best for parental benefits

OTTAWA — Is it better to be paid in credit or with… Continue reading

Alberta spends $3M for 30 nurse practitioners for remote, specialized areas

Province spends $3M for 30 nurse practitioners for remote, specialized areas EDMONTON… Continue reading

Most Read