Raekwon of The Wu-Tang Clan | Interview
In 1993, hip hop was forever changed by the emergence of the gritty, Shaolin style of the seminal rap clique The Wu-Tang Clan. From Staten Island, New York, a unique conglomerate of nine individually exceptional lyricists flourished. Members RZA, Method Man, Raekwon, Ghostface Killah, Inspectah Deck, GZA, U-God, Masta Killa, and the late Ol’ Dirty Bastard combined forces in to release their debut album, Enter The Wu-Tang: 36 Chambers. This album became a staple in the music industry as one of the greatest hip hop albums to date, with singles such as “Protect Ya Neck” and “C.R.E.A.M.”. Raekwon’s debut solo album, Only Built 4 Cuban Linx, released in 1995 and went gold in three days. With singles like “Ice Cream” and “Criminology”, this album received critical praise for its evocative, image-rich storytelling, and cinematic Mafia obsession. In 1997, Wu-Tang’s sophomore album, Wu-Tang Forever was certified four times platinum by the RIAA, quadruple the certification given Enter The Wu-Tang: 36 Chambers. Raekwon’s sophomore solo album, Immobilarity, was released in 1999. He later released The Lex Diamond Story in 2003, followed by The Vatican Mixtape Vol. 1 in 2007, and The Vatican Mixtape Vol. 2. In 2009, the sequel to Raekwon’s solo debut album was released, Only Built 4 Cuban Linx Pt. 2, selling over 68,000 copies in the first week. In 2010, Raekwon released an album, Wu-Massacre, with Method Man and Ghostface Killah, and then his most recent album in 2011, Shaolin Vs. Wu-Tang with features from Black Thought, Busta Rhymes, GZA, Havoc, Inspectah Deck, Lloyd Banks, Nas, and more.