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Young Adult Group (Wed)

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Vitali Isaev
Vitali Isaev

GZA RZA Third World (Acapella)

Meanwhile, the Dirty South had something to say, and the Goodie Mob's "Cell Therapy" created a demand for an album from the Georgia quartet that was talking about the new world order and secret societies long before there was a woke generation.

GZA RZA Third World (Acapella)

Besides the accolades at AmbrosiaForHeads, the legacies of both Wu-Tang and Nas speak for themselves. Before COVID-19, the Wu-Tang Clan celebrated the 25th anniversary of their debut Enter The Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) in epic fashion, uniting for a world tour while unveiling the acclaimed documentary series Wu-Tang Clan: Of Mics And Men as well as a TV drama based on their lives, Wu-Tang: An American Saga (season 3 starting this week!). Meanwhile, Nas has been celebrating his acclaimed Illmatic for the better part of the last decade, the album earning prestigious achievements all these years later, such as being inducted into the Library of Congress for preservation in the National Recording Registry. To add to the greatness that would be blessing the stage, it was announced just days before the tour kicked off that Busta Rhymes would be joining as a special guest. Busta may not have the same accolades as Wu-Tang and Nas, but he is definitely a fitting addition to the tour, being an MC from the same era and with the same longevity who should easily be considered one of the Top 5 greatest live performers of all-time.

The W is the third album by the American hip hop group Wu-Tang Clan, released on November 21, 2000. Singles from this album included "Protect Ya Neck (The Jump Off)", "Gravel Pit", "I Can't Go To Sleep", and the banned from TV "Careful (Click, Click)". The album was certified Platinum in U.S. and Canada.

It was back in 1993 when Wu-Tang Clan released its debut album, "Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)," and over the years the group has been regarded as one of the greatest hip-hop collectives of all time. From its fandom of classic "Kung Fu" films to sampling soulful songs throughout its discography, Wu-Tang Clan knows how to stand out in the hip-hop world. Not only did the group show complexities in its music, but each group member also knew how to make a statement.

And just like that, one of the most prolific Wu-Tang references was born and throughout the years the group has shown how much of an impact it has had on the world. In honor of O.D.B., RZA, GZA, Method Man, Raekwon, Ghostface Killah, Inspectah Deck, U-God, Masta Killa, and Cappadonna, here are the best songs you need to enter the Wu.

Films have the power to capture and make worlds, he said. And when a young mind deciphers that world properly, the film does more than its original intent. Which is how Shaolin ended up in Staten Island.

Using these martial art movies as intros and outros, lyrical kites or samples, and a deep devotion to a foreign culture made the group worldwide counterculture heroes. And in a long and often knotty history between the U.S. and China, people in both countries champion the Wu-Tang Clan.

Time was when the Wu-Tang Clan seemed invincible. In 1997, after Rza's five-year plan took the nine-member New York group from obscurity to the top of the album charts, the world was theirs. Solo albums from Method Man, Ol' Dirty Bastard, Raekwon, Gza and Ghostface Killah had turned each rapper into a major star, and laid the foundations for something that looked less like a pop career than a beats-and-rhymes dynasty. That it all started to crumble somewhat may not have been any more of a surprise than that the Clan got as big as they did; but this month's release of a new group album comes wrapped in the kind of confusion and apparent disarray that has characterised each of their periodic reappearances en bloc since the turn of the century.

After the comparative success of their third LP, The W in 2000 - the group's last million-seller - the release of a new Clan album has seemed to be less about anticipating great new music and more an exaggerated excuse for public airing of dirty laundry. Between the intra-band insults, the lawsuits and the disagreements over musical direction played out in public, via radio shows and websites, almost the last thing that anyone seems to care about is the tracks that end up getting released.

Little wonder, then, that the release of The Saga Continues seems to be the least remarked-upon of the recent headlines in Wu-Tang world. Questions arise over things as basic as whether or not it's actually a Clan LP, given that it's credited to Wu Tang (no hyphen; no Clan), and is produced entirely by Mathematics - the group's on-stage DJ, a member of the Wu-Elements extended production family mentored by the group's original and resurgent driving force, Rza, and designer of the band's iconic winged logo. Similar questions have been raised about its immediate predecessor, Once Upon A Time In Shaolin, the single copy of which sold by auction for $2m in an attempt to prove that music still had a value in the age of digital superfluity (a brave grand gesture that got rather missed in the melee that ensued when it turned out the album was bought by one of the most reviled men on the planet). According to an apparently well-sourced story published by Bloomberg in September, that record - produced entirely by another group associate, Cilvaringz - wasn't an official Clan album either.

R: And how it fits in the canon o' things is that... the title tells you. It's Wu Tang, The Saga Continues. We're continuing our legacy, continuing our sound of music: continuing the emcees' point of view on lyricism, world events, pop culture, underground culture. You're hearing our take, in 2017: what are these guys thinking about? What are these guys writing about? Where are their heads at? Well, you can hear it, from a grown-man perspective. I have the executive position to... er... validate or not validate the product, you know what I mean? And when I heard this in its early phase - just the beats, and a few rappers on there - I was like, 'Yeah, that shit sound like the Wu.' It sound like that Wu sound that not only some of the fans been screamin' for, but even some of the emcees been screamin' for. And what it also did - it inspired me. And that's when you know it's Wu. Wu has the inspiration to it. Wu-Tang Clan? Yeah, you can put a face on it; but the Wu inspiration, you can't really put a face on that. And this album has captured that.

M: Yeah. I didn't wanna deal with all that. But musically, I think I had something in myself to prove too, and I wanted to really buckle down. So after I dismissed that, when I got to this point, I was gonna listen to a couple o' albums, you know, just get a little inspiration. So I put in 36 Chambers, and as soon as I put it on, I zoned out on the music, and I started hearing all types o' things, so I just really started studying it. Then I went to 2001 - those are my two favourite producers: Rza and Dre. I was just listening to his sonics - there's space in the music; there's certain things Dre did. And I really studied that album. So after I listened to that, I had a few more CDs but I said, 'Nah, I'm good. I got all the food I need right there.' And I took what I learned from each CD, because I knew there was no way in the world I could replicate either one of them - they are what they are, so I have to become what I am. So I just took what I learned from both of those and applied it to what I was already doing.

And the cool thing about this album: it was motivated by the music. It wasn't motivated by time, budget, or creative direction. If you think about A Better Tomorrow, that was made because I was inspired to tell the world we have to make a better tomorrow. It was my personal feeling. I went to my crew, and was like, 'This is what I wanna do,' and they kinda unwittingly obliged me. And not being totally engaged...

R: Yeah. It wasn't until, I think, after [Jay-Z's] 4:44 came out that a couple of the brothers came to me and was like, 'OK, I see what you was doin'. You wanted us to be grown.' And I did want us to be grown, because I think the world looks at Wu-Tang in a certain eyesight: not just in music. They've followed us; they've been with us. I tried to tell some of the guys to write about their children so that our fans, who are now taking their kids to the movies - and are not showin' up at our clubs any more, heheheh - they could have a chance to understand the experience of fatherhood through the men who may have gotten them to that level.

R: And Cappadonna too - he says: 'Queen of the seven seas'. You know? He says: 'Let me beat that until you say, "Cap"'. Like, he wanna have hot sex! But he says, 'You're not a hood rat/you're from a good batch.' He says: 'Your intellect is like Michelle Barack'. He's complimenting her. In mines, I say she recorded me and put it on the iCloud, and TMZ could report it, and everything. So I went to that world, but I ended off with, 'But this is past fascination; it's past infatuation. It's like she was my soul aspiration.'

Well, my apologies in that case, because I'd misinterpreted. But it's an interesting wider point. You've had years in Hollywood, and we're seeing what's going on in that industry now. Over the years, you look at a lot of rappers who talk the way they do about women, and you wonder, 'Well, there's probably loads of stories going to come out from the hip hop world now.'

R: One of my hopes is for it to tour the world in museums. Set it up, set the headphones up, go to the museum, and have people come in and listen. You know? Enjoy the two hours, like any other art exhibit. Enjoy it, and walk away. That was my true... That's what I told Martin [Shkreli]. That's, like, the goal of this thing. And at the end of the day, if it could end up in my hands at the end of the day... 'Cos I have a place for it in my house! I'll say that! But if not, we thought we'd put it in Morocco, up near a temple, at the end of the day, as its final destination. Because it's really something that we really feel spiritually important about. 041b061a72


Description: The group is a lively yet supportive therapy g...


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