The Red Bull Music Academy hit me up and asked me if I wanted to host a panel with the Wu-Tang Clan discussing their seminal debut Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers). The answer to that question was obvious and this Wednesday (9/28), I made the trip to Shaolin Land to moderate a lecture was part of RBMA’s Five Out of Five Tour that features artist from each NYC borough, performing and discussing their classic albums, hence Wu-Tang Clan and Staten Island.
There was some minor drama with some Wu members being unaware of the panel (the group performed at the venue, Eve Lounge in Staten Island, that night), which led to the discussion’s focus shifting to Only Built 4 Cuban Linx… since all the members on hand—Raekwon, Ghostface Killah, Masta Killa and also Cappadonna—participated in creating the masterful album. The conversation was lively and many jewels were dropped.
Red Bull will be posting the lecture in its entirety but AllHipHop was on hand and already has a bunch of videos from the event up. Some choice moments include Wu-Tang revealing they too watch soap operas and Raekwon speaking on playing A&R for Nas as well as the creation of “Incarcerated Scarfaces” (above). There was also a portion where Ghostface recounted hitting a “grandfather deer” in New Jersey while listening to Cuban Linx for the first time that was hilarious, but isn’t up yet. God bless that deer.
BLATANT SELF-PROMOTION: A lot of this info and much more can be found in my book, The Wu-Tang Clan & RZA: A Trip Through Hip Hop’s 36 Chambers. Shout out to Allah Mathematics who was also on stage.
Ghostface Killah on “All My Children” and His Favorite Wu Album
Raekwon and Ghostface on the Importance of RZA
Raekwon on Nas and “Verbal Intercourse”
John Coltrane “Acknowledgement”
There are three John Coltrane songs I suggest to the uninitiated: “Part 1: ‘Acknowledgement'” from A Love Supreme, “Naima” from Giant Steps, and “Blue Train” from Blue Train. Whenever life’s perpetual fuckery wears on me, a little dash of Coltrane’s catalog soothes any built up rancor. Happy belated birthday sir, and thank you.
John Coltrane “Naima”
John Coltrane “Blue Train”
Brownsville’s own Maffew Ragazino drops his debut album, Rhyme Pays, for the free free. No excuse to take a gander at his talents. Video for lead single “Black Sheep” below.
DOWNLOAD: Maffew Ragazino Rhyme Pays
“Colonel Abrams called, he wants his disco shirt back.”—Sean Price
“Just think about running to the corner store, maybe like 4 or 5,000 times.”—Dallas Penn
Dru Ha aka The Big Cheese (co-CEO & co-Founder of Duck Down Records) is prepping to run the NYC Marathon for a great cause (Alzheimer’s research). In the clip above his usual trainer (Mark Jenkins) has been replaced by official Brooklyn delegates, and Lo Lifestyle advocates, Sean Price and Dallas Penn. Needless to say, comedy ensues.
A couple of the homies—Low Key of YouHeardThatNew (below) and Bonsu Thompson, writer extraordinaire and former EIC of The Source Magazine (above)—get spotlighted by Sennheiser USA Headphones as part of their ‘Hear. I. Am.’ campaign. Still rocking with my Beats By Dre’s, though. Thoughtful and enlightening commentary from both these brothers that you shouldn’t hate, but congratulate.
Flipping through the New York Times Style Magazine this morning and who do I see in a fashion spread? Wiz Khalifa and his ‘band.’ The Pittsburgh rapper and his Taylor Gang crew gets dipped out in Alexander Wang and Vans in a spread titled ‘Really Big Bands’ that also includes Florence and the Machine, Gogol Bordella and Deerhunter, amongst others. Almost shockingly, and despite rumors that they got hitched, Amber Rose didn’t manage to make it into the photo. No shots.
Below, video for “Yoko” by Berner featuring a rapping Chris Brown, Wiz Khalifa and Big K.R.I.T. King Remembered In Time on the beat.
When’s the last time you got tested, for anything? With the audio book of Wretched, Pitiful, Poor, Blind & Naked set to drop in October, Malice releases “Pray,” the first of a new series of vignettes. Gotta respect a brother with a message. Waiting on that Long Live the Cane (Re-Up Gang), which he speak on briefly in the Fuse TV vid below. [H/T Mikey Fresh via MissInfo.tv]
Quincy’s daughter Rashida Jones covers the Fall 2011 issue of Antenna Magazine. This, is a win. Wrote about the good Yu-Ming Wu and alternate reality gaming in said issue. But, you’re probably still looking at Rashida Jones. Currently on ‘Parks and Recreation,’ the video below is of her appearance on Letterman when she was a regular on ‘The Office.’