Album: Tha Carter
Mannie Fresh: “We had a meeting when we was doing Tha Carter. It was like we have to come out with something that’s incredible and is going to set this label up for years, where people will be like, 'It wasn’t a fluke.' I never felt that way, but we always had people like, ‘Can they do it again? Can they change their sound?’
“I’m like, ‘Tha Carter is going to define rap for a while.’ Wayne was like, 'You really think?' I’m like, ‘I really do. It’s got to be something incredible. This needs to be your album, that’s the one where you can listen to these songs from one to whatever else is on there and this a jamming ass album.’ He was like, 'I’m going to put my thinking cap on.’ We drew from so many things from when we were doing that. We brought in his mom like, ‘What do you think somebody your age would want to hear?’ She gave us all of these great ideas. That’s where I came up with the Al Green song, 'Way More Flyer Than You.'
I’m like, ‘Tha Carter is going to define rap for a while.’ Wayne was like, 'You really think?' I’m like, ‘I really do. It’s got to be something incredible. This needs to be your album.
“I asked his mom to give me some songs that she could play in her age group and she was like, 'Frankie Beverly and the Maze.' I’m like we’re not going to be able to clear that, he ain’t letting nobody use nothing. I think she might have said something that’s traditional New Orleans, I’m like, 'Nah, New Orleans knows that song, nobody else.' Then she said the Al Green song and I’m like we can do that one and I felt like we covered that part. I was bringing in people and asking them about generations: In your era, what was jamming? What do you think? What can we do to make this something that’s unforgettable?
“When we did 'I Miss My Dawgs' and he was talking about The Hot Boyz. He was like, 'I want to do this but I don’t want to get Baby upset.' He was like, 'I don’t want the streets to be mad at me and I don’t want it to be taken the wrong way.' I’m like, 'If it’s what you want in your heart, then do it.' At the time it, everybody left so it was a hard thing to do. Baby and them wasn’t affiliated with none of these people. Even though they were on a label, he was about to make a song saying sincerely like, 'I miss ya’ll' and I’m like all of this needs to happen.”