Lil Wayne insisted it is impossible for new artists to “break” without social media.
The ‘Lollipop’ hitmaker – whose real name is Dwayne Michael Carter Jr. – acknowledged “real talent” is still essential in order to rise to the top, but he also believes there is no chance of doing so without an online presence and the exposure that offers to up-and-coming singers and rappers.
Asked what it takes to break new acts, he told Billboard: “Today, you have to know social media. If you don’t, you have to have a team that does.
“That said, the main thing today is what it has been yesterday and the day before yesterday: You just have to have real talent. Real, everlasting and undeniable talent.
“That’s how you still break an artist. Once you find that in an artist, then use and highlight that as much as you can, because it’s hard.
“There are lots of artists that want to be exactly what they see [and hear] on social media. They just want to be that instead of being what they actually can be.
“So get them to believe in what they are and what they truly can be. And even if it is a challenge, that challenge has always been one of the most fun things ever for me. I love it.”
The 43-year-old rapper believes hip-hop has changed more in recent years than ever before, which he attributes to the rise in social media.
He added: “Right now is the time where I see the most change in our genre, because back then, I think it was just progress more than change; progression from what was already set before us and also us honouring what was set before us.
“But now it’s not that no one’s honouring what was before them — it’s just that the world has changed thanks to social media.
“There was no such thing as social media when I started doing this. But social media has changed the genre and opened doors.
“That’s definitely what helped contribute to its going global. [Social media] is good and bad.”