The Clan’s founder, RZA, has been vocal about his desire to bring the Wu together for one last reunion album this year to celebrate the iconic rap group’s 20-year anniversary. RZA believes if the group allows him to take the reins and give him complete control, he can craft one hell of an album, but Raekwon for one isn’t ready to just jump in blindly.
“The bottom line is: Of course I want to see a Wu-Tang reunion. Of course. Who wouldn’t?” Rae said on Wednesday’s (February 20) “RapFix Live.” “I just want everything to be right, the business. When we made a lot of our great music, it was because we were in harmony. You cannot put guys together if there is no harmony, and on top of it, we’re doing business. As a man with children, I have to always look at that. It’s bigger than sometimes just the thought of it, the fact of it, it just gotta make sense.”
Before 1993, the music industry had never seen a group quite like Wu-Tang. As a nine-man collective, they dropped the multiplatinum Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers), and after fans grew familiar with the likes of Method Man, Ol’ Dirty Bastard and GZA, one by one, the entire crew began to drop solo LPs. Raekwon’s 1995 solo debut, Only Built 4 Cuban Linx …, didn’t only establish him as a Wu standout — it made him a certified rap star who could exist on his own among guys like the Notorious B.I.G., Nas and Jay-Z. Since then, Rae has gone on to release four more solo LPs and a few mixtapes on his own.
“What RZA did for my life and my career, I can never repay him, but more importantly, I know what I’ve done: I’ve built my bones. I’m on over like two (thousand) or 3,000 records,” he said. “I’ve created a brand for Raekwon, too. So, my thing is: I always just want to be fair about the business.”
Raekwon and RZA have butted heads in the past — most notably about the creative direction of the Clan’s last group LP, 8 Diagrams , back in 2007 — but the Chef makes it very clear: He has no ill will toward the man who gave him his start, but he still won’t settle, either.
“I’m not saying anything bad about RZA, but we’ve had problems in the past. That’s with any crew; every crew go through this, every artist, but then, hey, enough is enough. It’s like you just want things to be right and be fair,” he said.
It’s not just about money for the man who christened himself Lex Diamonds, helping to spur the mafia-inspired rap trend of the mid-1990s: The Chef doesn’t want to short change the fans. “We got people running around with tattoos on their neck, their head, their face, their feet, their arms, they naming their babies after us,” he said of the Wu’s impact. “They’re doing all of this and all of that, and when it’s time to do business, we’re grumpy? That’s not fair to everybody.”
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