April 2, 2011 17:00

Birdman: 'Jail gave Lil Wayne energy he needed to record 'Tha Carter IV''

Album set to feature guest spots from Drake and Nicki Minaj

Birdman: 'Jail gave Lil Wayne energy he needed to record 'Tha Carter IV''

Photo: PA

Lil Wayne's spell in prison last year gave him the energy he needed to record his new album, according to the co-founder of his record label Birdman.

Wayne has been working on 'Tha Carter IV' since being released from jail last November. He spent eight months behind bars over gun charges.

Cash Money Records co chief Birdman - real name Bryan Williams - is the executive producer of the album and reckons the jail time gave Wayne the chance "to sleep".

"I think the rest gave him another energy, and he's pouring it all out through his music," Williams told Billboard.com.

"There's a new energy... just a different energy. He can still rap his ass off, but he took his raps to another level. To me, he went back to that traditional raw Cash Money music, just raw beats, 808s popping off and Wayne rapping, hard. It really sounds great to me."

Cash Money Records artists Drake and Nicki Minaj are among the collaborators set to appear on the album, which is due to be released on May 16.

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