Wu Tang Clan's Enter the Wu Tang (36 Chambers)

Overview

Enter the Wu Tang (36 Chambers) is both critically-hailed and popularly-lauded as one of hip-hop’s seminal releases, establishing Wu Tang as rap’s eminent dynasty in the mid 90s while ushering in a new age of grimy production and inscrutable lyrics that was often imitated but never again repeated in terms of originality, innovation, or sheer impact. Wu Tang truly did “Bring The Ruckus” in contrast to the slickly-produced, sing-songy G-Funk emanating from the west coast. 36 Chambers also changed the way business ...

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Overview

Enter the Wu Tang (36 Chambers) is both critically-hailed and popularly-lauded as one of hip-hop’s seminal releases, establishing Wu Tang as rap’s eminent dynasty in the mid 90s while ushering in a new age of grimy production and inscrutable lyrics that was often imitated but never again repeated in terms of originality, innovation, or sheer impact. Wu Tang truly did “Bring The Ruckus” in contrast to the slickly-produced, sing-songy G-Funk emanating from the west coast. 36 Chambers also changed the way business was done in the music industry as a young iconoclast called The RZA signed his group to one major label while striking solo deals for indivdual MCs with other competing labels. He flooded the industry with his brand, the bat-shaped “W,”on his way to a diversified portfolio that included clothing lines, video games, comics, books and film scores. Though people like P. Diddy, Jay Z and 50 Cent have done it bigger and better, RZA predates all these artist/entrepreneurs. And if music is the true measure, producer Pharrell of The Neptunes, recognized as one of the top names in the game today, says of the RZA, “He’s the best that ever did this.”

Wu Tang’s status may have diminished in the current Bling Bling era of conspicuous consumption and club bangers, but they are reminder of what hip-hop really is and what it has the potential to be. No other album better exemplifies this than Enter The Wu Tang: 36 Chambers, a record that almost didn’t get made. RZA, the architect of the Clan, almost got locked up for a very long time. When he beat his rap and walked, he saw it as a new lease on life and ended up staying in his project apartment for a whole summer making the beats that would eventually become 36 Chambers. Then he asked his close friends—colorful personalities like the Genius, Old Dirty Bastard, Inspectah Deck, Raekwon the Chef, Method Man, Masta Killa, U-God, and Ghost Face Killa, who would come over and smoke angel dust (PCP) laced joints and drink malt liquor and drop wild rhymes over even crazier beats—to pony up some cash for studio time in Manhattan. Though not everyone contributed, RZA stitched together a formidable album, and the rest, as they say, is history.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780826429155
  • Publisher: Continuum International Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 8/28/2014
  • Series: 33 1/3 Series
  • Pages: 144

Meet the Author

S.H. Fernando Jr. is the author of The New Beats: Exploring the Music, Culture and Attitudes of Hip-Hop (1994). He has written on hip-hop for a range of publications including Spin, Vibe, Wax Poetics and Rolling Stone.

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