Who was 5th Ward Weebie? New Orleans is mourning the loss of a unique voice

Jerome Cosey's voice is part of the soundtrack of my childhood. He's been making New Orleanians bounce for more than 20 years.

by Mary Staes
January 10, 2020

“I REALLY WANT YOU! Why you making me wait so long?!”

Y’all know what’s next…


This chant is the soundtrack of my childhood. Every float this Mardi Gras is going to be blasting “I Really Want U” and “Shake It Like A Dog,” from its speaker system like it’s 2000 and not 2020. Jerome Cosey’s voice was heard from the airwaves on Q93 to the DJs on the corner and every school dance I can remember.

New Orleanians have been listening to 5th Ward Weebie’s infectious rhymes for more than 20 years.

According to a NOLA.com article, Cosey was a graduate of John F. Kennedy High School, already musically inclined and playing drums in the marching band. By 1999, his full-length debut, “Show the World,” hit the streets.

In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, his tongue-and-cheek hit “F— Katrina” voiced the opinions of an entire city affected by the storm. His song was later used in the first season of the HBO series “Treme.”

Almost 10 years later, “Lemme Find Out,” hit the airwaves, creating a whole new generation of Weebie fans across the nation.

His voice even appeared on Drake’s last studio album, during the breakdown of his hit “Nice for What.”

Not even two years ago, Weebie teamed up with artist and activist Brandan “B-mike” Odums, flipping his hit to get the word out about voting, and, specifically, State Constitutional Amendment 2, a Jim Crow-era jury law which addressed unanimous juries in felony trials. Voters hit the polls, and the law was eliminated.

“You already know, I’m reaching out letting ya’ll know, ya’ll gotta go vote,” he says in the intro. “It’s real serious right now.”

https://www.facebook.com/brandan.odums/videos/10102800447468078/

The loss of Cosey is serious, too. His voice was part of the fabric of a culture that preceded the floodwaters of Hurricane Katrina and was untouched by rapid gentrification.

“It broke my heart to learn that Jerome Cosey — our 5th Ward Weebie — has passed,” New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrel said in a statement on Twitter, “Let me find out you didn’t know who he was … He was an iconic personality, a New Orleans legend, and a beloved friend. He was the Bounce King, who showed us how to move, how to love, and how to bring passion and humanity to everything we do. New Orleans has lost a cornerstone of our culture. Our City will not be the same without his voice and his spirit. May he rest in God’s perfect peace.

Lemme find out you done gone all the way to heaven. We’ll miss you, Weebie. We made sure to cut up for you.

 

His funeral is set for Jan. 19 at the Mahalia Jackson Theater. Visitation will begin at 8 a.m. Click here fore more information on the funeral service arrangements.

Zulu Social Aid & Pleasure Club
Getting there
732 N Broad St, New Orleans, LA 70119, USA
Hours
Mon-Sun 4pm–2am
More Info

Mary Staes is Digital Content Lead for Very Local. She works with our freelancers and crafts content for our social media platforms and website. Before Very Local, she worked with CBS affiliate WWL-TV as a web producer and weekend assignment editor for about 4 years. She has also handled broadcast coverage for 160 Marine Reserve training facilities while she served as an active duty Marine. As a native New Orleanian, she takes being "very local" to heart. She loves being intertwined with the culture and figuring out how there are less than two degrees of separation between us all, whether...

More Local Stories

Eat Play Stay Orlando: Sanford

On this episode of Eat Play Stay Orlando explore what’s new in the Northern part of town. Sanford has a plethora of breweries, bars, and delicious dining options to choose from.

Hometown Tragedy: The Pike County Massacre

On this episode of Hometown Tragedy: Missing in Milwaukee, we’ll explore what happened to Jerica Banks, her children, and how it impacted their community.

Six New Orleans parks that are perfect locations to celebrate 4th of July

Head to one of these six New Orleans parks to celebrate Independence Day in the city.

Cheap Date Orlando: Punk Rock & Pooches

Two Orlando couples shop vintage, search for the perfect slice, visit a post-apocalyptic saloon, and take the stage on blind dates in Orlando.

Fit and Fab: Free summer workouts in Boston

Cover photo courtesy Getty Images Looking to get fit for the summer? Still wary of COVID-19 or just looking for some sunshine while you sweat? Here are some Boston free summer workouts across the city so you can keep moving all season long! Seaport Sweat May 2 to Sept. 29 Boston’s biggest free workout series…

What’s On the Menu?: Farm-to-table

The farm-to-table movement brings locally grown foods to your plate. Not only will enjoying farm-to-table meals allow you to indulge in fresh, nutritional, seasonal dishes, but farm-to-table dining helps the environment and supports the local economy.  Check out these delicious farm-to-table restaurants in Greenville, South Carolina on the latest episode of What’s On the Menu?. …

A guide to some of the best Black-owned brunch spots in NOLA

Gather the crew together, make those reservations, and celebrate all things Black at brunch. 

A guide to Pittsburgh’s summer events must-do list

Check out our roundup below for the can’t-miss events happening in the city over the next few months.

Eat Play Stay Orlando: Tarpon Springs

In this episode of Eat Play Stay Orlando you’ll be transported to a thriving Greek community nestled on Florida’s gulf coast. From sponge diving to flaming cheese to a Greek bakery that supplies a ginormous amount of baklava to the entire country, you’re sure to fall in love with Greek culture in Tarpon Springs, Florida.

Dorchester doughnuts that pack a paczki

These traditional Polish pastries are the real deal.

black owned brunch spots new orleans 14 parishes

A guide to some of the best Black-owned brunch spots in NOLA

Gather the crew together, make those reservations, and celebrate all things Black at brunch. 

drive-in movie theaters near Pittsburgh

Guide to drive-in movie theaters near Pittsburgh

Road-trip idea: Get out of the house and under the stars. Here are six drive-in movie theaters you can visit all summer long.

documentaries about Pittsburgh

9 documentaries about Pittsburgh history

From punk music in the ‘80s to a documentary about the polio vaccine, there is a lot of local history to watch

Brunchfaced: Jazz Fest Edition

I can’t think of any better way to help celebrate Jazz Fest’s 50 years of joy than with something else that brings me joy: BRUNCH.