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The “best rapper alive” to hit the Bay

Lil Wayne, the self-proclaimed “best rapper alive, since the best rapper [Jay-Z] retired,” will be hitting the Bay area this Saturday to perform for a sold-out crowd at Jannus Landing.

In 1997, the New Orleans native got his professional start with the now-defunct New Orleans rap crew the Hot Boys. The group consisted of fellow Cash Money label members B.G., Turk and Juvenile, who are better known for their booty-shaking anthems than their lyrical complexity.

By 1999, Wayne emerged as a solo artist on the Cash Money Records imprint. He released several albums, but it wasn’t until 2004’s Tha Carter that critics and listeners began to take note of Wayne’s evolving lyrics and flow.

When Tha Carter II finally hit stores at the end of 2005, Wayne’s talent became impossible to ignore. The album was hailed as a critical and commercial success, debuting at No. 2 on the Billboard charts and eventually going platinum.

With his sixth studio album, Tha Carter III, named the most anticipated album of 2007 by XXL magazine and a joint album with Dipset member Juelz Santana titled I Can’t Feel My Face on the way, 2007 is slated to be Lil Wayne’s year.

Wayne’s show is sure to have several surprises. Jannus Landing employee James Bryant remained mum on the details, but did state that there will be an unknown opening act, and any guests of Lil Wayne will not be disclosed until the day of the show. In addition, reports that Wayne has been displaying his recently-acquired guitar playing skills at many of his live shows.

Though the concert is sold out, there is still a chance to see the show. Radio station Wild 98.7 promotes Jannus Landing’s shows and will be giving out tickets for the rest of the week. Listeners will have a chance to win two tickets to the show.

The show kicks off at 7 p.m., and all ages are welcome. Seating is general admission. Concertgoers are allowed to bring cameras, but Bryant suggested bringing disposable cameras for fear of confiscation by security. For more information, visit