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Tag: RZA (1-8 of 8)

RZA says he and Raekwon have 30 days to resolve issues to make July release of 'A Better Tomorrow' -- EXCLUSIVE

There is a lot going down in the land of the Wu-Tang Clan right now. They have their one-copy-only album Once Upon a Time in Shaolin currently up for auction, plus a proper album called A Better Tomorrow that has been in the works for about a year. But the release of A Better Tomorrow may be in jeopardy now that Raekwon has declared himself “on strike” from the Wu.

That does not sit will with Wu leader the RZA, who sat down with our friends over at Sports Illustrated for a conversation about his turn in the new film Brick Mansions and the upcoming Wu projects.

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Wu-Tang Clan drama has Raekwon 'on strike' from group

All is not well in Wu-Land.

The legendary hip-hop group Wu-Tang Clan, which recently announced its zany scheme to release just one single (very expensive) copy of their new album, is now beset by some internal strife, prompting Raekwon to more or less protest the new music.

When asked about it in a video interview, fellow Wu leader RZA said, “I would say that maybe creatively we on different paths.”

Raekwon, however, was much less gentle with his wording. In a new Rolling Stone interview, the rapper presented his side of the argument:  READ FULL STORY

RZA releases Paul Walker tribute song 'Destiny Bends': Hear it here

Among those affected by Paul Walker’s death is Wu-Tang Clan leader RZA, who late last night released a tribute song to his friend and former coworker.

Titled “Destiny Bends,” the song was written shortly after word of Walker’s passing went public, RZA explains in the SoundCloud post.

“I met Paul on the set of the film Brick Mansion, where we talked, laughed, and exchanged ideas of life and fatherhood,” he wrote. “I only knew him personally for less than a year, but we knew each other through our work and art. We saw in each other a kindred spirit of men coming from unlikely circumstances, and rising to be the light and beacon of our family and loved ones.” 

RZA, who has been sidelining in films for a while now, said that he and Walker “had plans to continue working with each other in the future. … It seemed destined, but ‘destiny bends.’”

The track was composed by RZA and his two sons, with vocals by Will Wells. The post ended with the following note: “This song is not for criticism, it’s just a sketch demo. Please enjoy and reflect.”

Listen below:

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Fast talking at the end of the world: 15 thoughts on hip-hop's 1998 middle age

Just last week, one of the topics on EW Radio was the number of genre-defining hip-hop albums hitting their twentieth anniversaries this year.

Snoop Doggy Dogg’s Doggystyle, Wu-Tang Clan’s Enter The Wu-Tang (36 Chambers), A Tribe Called Quest’s Midnight Marauders, and Salt-N-Pepa’s Very Necessary all just wrapped their second decade. Those all represent different corners of the rap universe, and they all point to a crucial moment when hip-hop became such an overwhelming presence that mainstream culture had no choice but to move in its direction, rather than the other way around. The success of Dr. Dre’s The Chronic, which dropped in late ’92, started the trend, and it reached its apotheosis with the one-two punch of Notorious B.I.G.’s 1994 debut Ready to Die and Tupac’s 1995 crossover smash Me Against the World.

Plenty of rap records had found their way to the upper echelon of the charts, though they were primarily pandering or novelty tracks (in ’92, both Kriss Kross’ “Jump” and Sir Mix-A-Lot’s “Baby Got Back” became Hot 100 chart toppers). The albums from ’93 were purer hip-hop, and they were crafted by fantastically charismatic characters who were singular in their delivery and presentation. The success of Doggystyle was particularly jaw-dropping—listening to that album 20 years on, it still packs an incredible impact both as a unique piece of pop music and as a remarkably dirty statement of purpose.

Those albums are unimpeachable classics, and by design there’s not a whole lot more to add to that conversation. So let’s fast-forward five years to the albums from late ’98 that are now turning 15 years old. They represent a strange middle age for hip-hop, as its dominance on the pop chart began to be taken for granted and just about everybody began to lose their way.

There are plenty of notable big-ticket rap records from 1998′s fourth quarter, and none of them are classics. It could even be argued that not a single one of them is any good. But they do represent a culture in transition, and it’s a fascinating look at where hip-hop was and how it managed to get to the place it is now. So on the 15th anniversary of Busta Rhymes’ E.L.E. (Extinction Level Event): The Final World Front, Method Man’s Tical 2000: Judgment Day, Mystikal’s Ghetto Fabulous, Ice Cube’s War & Peace Volume 1: The War Disc, RZA’s Bobby Digital In Stereo, DMX’s Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood, Juvenile’s 400 Degreez, and Redman’s Doc’s Da Name 2000, here are 15 thoughts on the 15th anniversary of a weird time for hip-hop.

1. Everybody totally thought Y2K was going to be a real thing
For anybody too young or too unborn to remember Y2K, it seems utterly ridiculous. READ FULL STORY

Interview: Dhani Harrison talks 'Beautiful Creatures,' the RZA, and Abbey Road

Between promoting the latest album from his band thenewno2, scoring the movie version of the YA-lit hit Beautiful Creatures, and collaborating with the Wu-Tang Clan, Dhani Harrison has been a busy man lately. We caught up with the son of the Quiet Beatle to find out more about about what he’s been up to.

Speaking on the phone from Los Angeles, Harrison discussed everything from recording at Abbey Road and being in the studio with the RZA to remembering the late Ravi Shankar.

It’s probably the only interview namechecking Catfish Keith that you’ll read all day. Check out the full Q&A below:

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Best of 2012: The year in lyrics, from Taylor Swift to Carly Rae

call-me-maybe.jpg

Music makes the people come together — but lyrics might be even more powerful as unification tools. Think about it: Whether you’re a rap fiend or a hater of all things hip hop, you have to admire a guy who figures out a way to rhyme “narcissist” with “lobster bisque.” See below to find out what we’ve dubbed 2012′s top five lyrics, which artists warbled 2012′s worst five lyrics, and which lyric won the dubious honor of being the year’s best AND worst at the same time. (Hint: Think “Call Me Maybe.”)

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Black Keys and RZA duke it out in the 'Baddest Man Alive' video: Watch it here

You’ve already gotten a chance to listen to the soundtrack to RZA’s The Man With the Iron Fists, but you still have to wait until Nov. 2 to see the movie itself. Boo! But luckily, there’s a way to split the difference: the new action-heavy music video for the Black Keys and RZA’s “The Baddest Man Alive.”

The collaboration leads off the movie’s soundtrack, which hits streets today, and impressively blends together the Keys’ brand of bluesy bar rock and RZA’s iconic flow. But the best thing about the Chris Marrs Piliero-directed clip, which pits the Wu-Tang vet against the Akron band, has to be the innovative use of food as weaponry. The shot of RZA smacking Dan Auerbach with a fish is pretty priceless — and a good sign that The Man With the Iron Fists will probably be as awesome as it looks.

Take a look at the “Baddest Man Alive” clip below and let us know what you think:

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RZA's 'The Man with the Iron Fists' Soundtrack -- Hear it here

The trailer for the RZA-directed The Man with the Iron Fists poses a number of questions: What is happening? What is Russell Crowe doing in that mustache? Can we buy a ticket now? But one thing is for certain: the soundtrack is pretty badass.

RZA is the guy who produced Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) after all. So it’s no surprise that he called up a bunch of his friends — including Kanye, Pusha T, The Black Keys, and his Wu-Tang comrades, no big deal — and made what is likely to be one of the best hip-hop movie soundtracks this side of Menace II Society.

The record hits stores on Oct. 23, but it’s available now to stream online — check it out after the jump.

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