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Lil Wayne Covers Tupac, Premieres New Music on MTV Unplugged

While the world was watching Dirk Nowitzki best LeBron James, Lil Wayne's highly anticipated MTV Unplugged performance was premiering over on MTV. And while the whole thing — featuring Wayne's reliably spirited renditions of "A Milli," "6 Foot 7 Foot," and "Drop the World" — is probably worth your time, there are two moments that stand out. First: At eighteen minutes in, Wayne takes on Tupac's "Hail Mary." It's notable enough because rappers almost never cover other rappers; also, it turns out that it's really fun to hear Lil Wayne make "Hail Mary" sound like a Lil Wayne song (more covers, please, sir). Then, at 31 minutes in, comes the premiere of Tha Carter IV track "Nightmares of the Bottom." Says Wayne as introduction: "Now, I had the choice to do any song off the album, and I said I figured I have a pretty intelligent crowd, so I’d rather not do nothing too hype, nothing too crazy. I wanted to do something that ya’ll can listen to and say, that [blank] actually said such and such. And I’m leave here and get that album where that [blank] said such and such." Falling somewhere in between the slower moments on Tha Carter III and the later-career work of Common — and packing an ominously peppy keyboard line that will get stuck in your head — it's a nice reminder as to why we've been so eagerly awaiting Carter IV.