The album, which was released on January 31 with no promotion, is the 13th studio album released by the 37-year-old New Orleans rapper. This is the first album Lil Wayne has put out since the release of Tha Carter V in September 2018.
Featured on the album are several household names from the hip hop industry including Big Sean, Lil Baby, 2 Chainz, Jay Rock, and the late XXXTentacion, who passed away after being shot in Miami in 2018.
One of the album’s 24 tracks is meant to honor the late basketball legend Kobe Bryant, who passed away on January 26 (just days before the album was released) in a tragic helicopter crash along with his 13-year-old daughter Gianna and seven others, as reported by The Inquisitr.
Track eight on the album (titled “Bing James”) features a 24-second-long silence at the end of the song to pay homage to the number the NBA superstar wore while he played for the Los Angeles Lakers.
The veteran rapper released the album through his record company Young Money Entertainment and Republic Records, a division of Universal Music Group. Young Money has signed some of the biggest artists of the 2010s such as Drake and Nicki Minaj and has produced more than a dozen studio albums that have debuted at No. 1 on the charts.
Funeral was streamed 134 million times in its first week (which is the equivalent of selling 139,000 units) in the United States, and the album sold an additional 38,000 units, Billboard reported.
Second to Funeral on the Billboard 200 albums chart was Roddy Ricch’s Please Excuse Me for Being Antisocial, which spent three weeks at No. 1, while the third spot went to Eminem’s Music to Be Murdered By.
Other Lil Wayne albums that have reached the coveted No. 1 Billboard spot include Tha Carter V (2018), Tha Carter IV (2011), I Am Not a Human Being (2010), and Tha Carter III (2008).
Lil Wayne has long been praised as a hip hop legend, having won several Billboard awards, BET Hip Hop awards, and five Grammy awards including Best Rap Album for Tha Carter III.
In 2018, he was honored by BET at the Hip Hop Awards and was named their I Am Hip Hop Icon that year.
“He is the definition of hip hop in all aspects,” DJ Khaled said in the video tribute.