This summer is looking like the season of New York hip-hop group reunions. Earlier in the summer we had the epic reunion of G-Unit and shortly followed the reunion of Dipset. Now, it is time for one of the most famous and influential hip-hop groups of all time to reunite... The Wu-Tang Clan.
The Wu-Tang Clan first blessed us with their music back in November 1993 with one of the most influential and classic albums to ever surface in the hip-hop world, '36 Chambers.’ The album gave light to a new gritty, street style of hip-hop that changed the game. The Clan was mob-like coming on stages in an intimidating number of members. At the time, no one had seen anything like it. Anyone in hip hop would agree that ’36 Chambers’ is one of the most notable albums in hip-hop to date.
On Wednesday night, August 6, the Clan made their first appearance since 2007, as a group, on The Daily Show With Jon Stewart. On the show, the group premiered two new songs that will be on their new album titled ‘A Better Tomorrow’ which is set to be released this November. The group first performed their first single ‘Ron O’Neal.’ The song samples the movie ‘Super Fly’ which actor Ron O’Neal stared in. The video of this performance can be seen here. The group then closed the show with another song titled ‘Triumph.’
This reunion of all nine current members of the Wu has been a long time coming. The hopes and ambitions for the group has been to make a twentieth anniversary album in celebration of the release of '36 Chambers.' When the math is done, that means that this album ‘A Better Tomorrow’ should have been released last November to technically be twenty years from the release of ’36 Chambers.’
The anticipation has been building for this twentieth anniversary album to come and consequently, has been followed by drama and controversy. According to many media sources, RZA, the main producer of the group, invested a lot of time and money to get the group back into the studio and has been quoted calling out some members of the group for not giving as much time as was needed to complete the album. The two main members he criticized were rappers Ghostface Killah and Raekwon.
Supposably, these two members rarely made it into the studio, while members like Method Man and Cappadonna, were at the studio all the time. This proved to be frustrating for a lot of the members and the media blew up with it. There was a lot of doubt about the album and fans were expecting the group to not be able to deliver a new album. Ghostface was caught up with working on a sequel to his classic album ‘Supreme Clientele’ and a new collaboration album with legendary producer DOOM, while Raekwon was focusing on his family life.
At the end of the day, all nine living members(Ghostface Killah, RZA, Inspectah Deck, Raekwon, Cappadonna, Masta Killah, Method Man, GZA, U-God) dropped all their side projects for this album. The group overcame the conflict and miscommunications and are now delivering the hip-hop public one of the biggest anniversary celebrations for one of the biggest hip-hop albums in the history of the genre. Pretty epic.
The song ‘Ron O’Neal’ is available to stream on Soundcloud here. Also, get excited for the album ‘A Better Tomorrow’ expected to be released this November. See the Wu-Tang interview with Jon Stewart here.