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Thread: Wu Forever!

  1. #31
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    Continued from previous post



    It's possible Miley got the group's blessing if she was able to get the sample cleared and managed to get Wu-Tang member Ghostface Killah to drop a verse in the outro. But considering the amount of backlash Cyrus has received on social media for her take on hip-hop during her Bangerz era, it's unclear how this collaboration will ride with rap fans.

    Possible critics aside, Miley's take on the Wu-Tang classic is an airy, chilled-out pop tune honoring the singer's party lifestyle. "Wake up with new tattoos on my body / Drugs rule everything around me," she sings in part of the chorus.

    Read all of the lyrics to "D.R.E.A.M." below.

    You're in my bed uninvited
    It's fine 'cause I'm in a mood
    Hope you don't mind if I spike it
    We'll drink it, just me and you

    And you know we're gonna be alright
    We'll be sleeping on a red-eye flight
    Keep up with me 'til the end of the night
    And we're just gettin' started

    Always last to leave the party
    Drugs rule everything around me
    Wake up with new tattoos on my body
    Drugs rule everything around me
    Hit the ghost, raise a toast, pop the molly
    I can go toe to toe, like I'm Olly
    We're all tryna feel the lonely
    Drugs rule everything around me

    Drugs rule everything around me
    Drugs rule everything around me

    These planes are all UFOs
    And this city's in outer space
    It's better than where we came from
    I think that we both should stay

    'Cause you know we're gonna be alright
    We'll be ****ing on a red-eye flight
    Keep up with me 'til the end of the night
    And we're just gettin' started

    Always last to leave the party
    Drugs rule everything around me
    Wake up with new tattoos on my body
    Drugs rule everything around me
    Hit the ghost, raise a toast, pop the molly
    All the girls in my room look like Dolly
    We're all tryna feel the lonely
    Drugs rule everything around me

    (Drugs rule everything around me)
    Drugs rule everything around me
    Drugs rule everything around me
    Drugs rule everything around me
    Drugs rule everything around me

    [Outro: Ghostface Killah]
    The drugs rule everything around me
    You could call me a king
    I got it all in my store, you should crown me
    Purple Perc, sticky green Mollies, sipping lean
    Got the white that's sure to light the floor like in "Billie Jean"
    Scarface nights (Nights)
    500 thousand on the pinkie, Broadway ice (Ice)
    We throw bangers at weddings and y'all throw rice (Rice)
    Lollapalooza, Coachella custies, that's my type
    Party all night

    THREADS
    The 36th Chamber of Shaolin - RZA live score
    Wu Forever!
    Gene Ching
    Publisher www.KungFuMagazine.com
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  2. #32
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    Tomorrow!

    Who's gonna be inna house? I'll be volunteering with Rock Med. Stop by and say 'hi'!

    22 JUN
    Wu-Tang Clan Tickets
    Shoreline Amphitheatre | Mountain View, California


    Wu-Tang Clan comes to Shoreline Amphitheatre on Saturday 22nd June 2019 to Bring Da Ruckus!!! Wu-Tang celebrates the 25th anniversary of their iconic debut album Enter The Wu Tang: 36 Chambers this year, and they're bringing the party to Mountain View! One hell of a party it's gonna be too, with special guests Eric B & Rakim, De La Soul, The Pharcyde & More! Don't miss this incredible once-in-a-lifetime show!



    Bursting onto the hip hop scene in 1993 with the single "Protect Ya Neck", Staten Island-based hip hop group Wu-Tang Clan has been hailed by many as the greatest rap group of all time. Originally formed of East Coast rappers RZA, GZA, Ol' Dirty *******, Method Man, Raekwon, Ghostface Killah, Inspectah Deck, U-God and Masta Killa, the group has released four gold and platinum studio albums since its formation in 1991, and its debut album Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) (1993), is considered one of the greatest albums in hip-hop history. An extensive number of rappers and groups are affiliated with Wu-Tang Clan, who launched many of their careers, and they are known collectively as the Wu-Tang Killa Bees. Their eighth and most recent studio album, The Saga Continues, was released in October 2017.

    Gene Ching
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  3. #33
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    ftw

    Gene Ching
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  4. #34
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    Baddest ***** in the Room

    More on Sophia here.

    Former RZA, ODB, and D'Angelo Manager Sophia Chang to Tell Her Story in New Audiobook Memoir
    BY SHAWN SETARO
    Shawn is a Senior Staff Writer at Complex and the host of The Cipher, a critically acclaimed hip-hop podcast that conducts in-depth interviews with the genre’s most interesting and important figures.
    Shawn is also the former editor-in-chief of Rap Genius, and has written about music and culture for Forbes, The Atlantic, Vibe, The Source, GQ, Esquire, The Sondheim Review, and more.
    JUL 25, 2019


    Image via Publicist

    If you watched the recent Wu-Tang Clan documentary Of Mics and Men or listened to the powerful 2017 podcast Mogul about the late Chris Lighty, you no doubt recall Sophia Chang. Chang, a memorable interview subject in both projects, calls herself "the first Asian woman in hip-hop," and she has the resumé to back up the title.

    She has worked at record labels, including stints as General Manager of both RZA's Razor Sharp Records and Joey Badass' Pro Era Records. But Chang is best known for her time as a manager, with an all-star roster of clients: Wu-Tang members RZA, GZA, and Ol' Dirty *******; neo-soul heroes D'Angelo and Raphael Saadiq; Q-Tip; and more. ("I'm really hardwired to manage people," she explained to Complex.)


    Now, after a career of helping great artists tell their stories, Chang is getting ready to tell her own. Her audio memoir The Baddest ***** in the Room (put out by Audible and Reese Witherspoon's company Hello Sunshine) comes out on Sept. 26, and is available for pre-order starting today (July 25).


    Image via Publicist

    Chang will be narrating the memoir herself, which she told Complex was absolutely crucial. To make the point, she quoted an old friend.

    "I voiced the book myself because I think it's really important that people are exposed to my voice both figuratively as well as literally. RZA says, 'My tongue is my sword.' That's very much how I look at myself. I'm a petite Asian woman who did not come into this industry having wealth, power, fame. So what I had to do was work really, really hard, and part of crafting my persona and my identity was sharpening my blade. In kung fu, we say, 'Sharpen your blade every day.' So, not only do I train in kung fu every day, but I also hone the way that I speak, and my voice is my most powerful weapon and tool for myself and to speak on behalf of others."

    Chang, who in recent years has started a new career in public speaking, says that the memoir provides her with an additional way to get her message out, and to honor the people who have been alongside her for her journey.

    "I'm really grateful that Reese Witherspoon and Hello Sunshine and Audible gave me this opportunity and believed that my story was also worthy of telling," she elaborates. "And now that I have the opportunity to tell my story, I'm really grateful that I can share a lot of how other people have been so influential and loving and gracious and generous. That's a range of people from somebody like a Joey Ramone [who Chang met on her very first trip to New York City] that tipped it off, to my mentor Michael Ostin, to Wu-Tang, to the friends that sit around my dinner table, to the extraordinary women in my life. I always talk about the mother****ing village that raised me, and that village comprises all of those people. I get to honor those relationships, and I'm grateful for that."

    Baddest ***** in the Room can be pre-ordered here. Chang is coy about details, but says her audio memoir "will be like no other. This audiobook will be a game changer." You can hear an excerpt, in which she talks about her relationship with Wu-Tang, below.

    THREADS
    Shi Yan Ming & Shaolin Temple USA
    Wu Forever!
    Gene Ching
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  5. #35
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    Our forum can't even say ****

    Wu-Tang Clan To Replace Die Antwoord At 2019 Riot Fest Following ****phobic Slur Backlash
    August 21, 2019 | 2:28 PM
    by Dana Scott


    Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

    CHICAGO, IL – The 2019 Riot Fest organizers announced via social media that Die Antwoord has been dropped from its lineup and revealed Wednesday (August 21) that Wu-Tang Clan will fill that slot for its show on September 14 in Chicago.

    The eclectic South African “zef” Hip Hop group and was taken off the bill Tuesday after a recent viral video shows the South African group had used ****phobic slurs.

    Die Antwoord was also dropped from the 2019 Louder Than Life festival stemming from group members Ninja and ¥o-landi Visser seen in a 2012 video using ****phobic slurs during a physical altercation in Australia against DJ Andy Butler from dance music collective Hercule & Love Affair.

    Ninja defended his attack in a statement released via Die Antwoord’s Facebook page on August 18 that the attack on Butler wasn’t a hate crime, but rather “just a fight with someone who ****ed with us.”

    “This fight had nothing to with the fact that this guy was gay. We dont care about people’s sexual preference,” Ninja said. “Our DJ and best friend DJ HITEK is gay, and alot of people in our crew are gay.

    “But if a person (no matter what their sexual preference it) keeps harrassing us over and over, then physically harrasses ¥o-landi, there will obviously be repercussion.”

    Die Antwoord’s producer and DJ Hi-Tek is not to be confused with Talib Kweli’s former Reflection Eternal producer DJ Hi-Tek.

    The Riot Fest will occur between September 13-15 in Chicago’s Douglas Park.
    THREADS
    Die Antwoord
    Wu Forever!
    Gene Ching
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  6. #36
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    Sophia & Wu



    Sophia Chang — Woman Who Helped Guide the Career of the Wu-Tang Clan, Q-Tip & More — is Finally Telling Her Story [Interview]
    POSTED BY DIMAS SANFIORENZO 19 HOURS AGO


    Photo Credit: Dana Scruggs

    We sat down with industry veteran Sophia Chang, who just released her memoir The Baddest ***** in the Room. She talked about her career, public speaking, her relationship with Chris Lighty, and imagining Wu-Tang Clan’s “C.R.E.A.M.” video with women at the table.
    “My name is Sophia Chang, and I was raised by Wu-Tang.”

    Usually, that would make for an amazing greeting. But it’s one of the last things Sophia Chang tells me during our 40-minute phone conversation we have just days after her memoir, the Audible Originals The Baddest ***** in the Room, is published. It’s a hell of a line, one she’s probably said dozens of times during her 30-year career working in music.

    It’s not hyperbole, either. In the early ’90s, Chang was a pivotal behind the scenes player in music, working in various departments from A&R to promotions to management. Over the years she collaborated and rubbed shoulders with a wide spectrum of artists: like Paul Simon, Q-Tip, Redman, and Chris Lighty. But it was the Wu-Tang Clan who she really bonded with and who, she says, “claimed” her. She met the Clan in 1993, right when they released their debut single, “Protect Ya Neck,” and almost instantly sparked a friendship with the group. Often called “Wu-Tang’s muse,” she has, at various points in her career, managed RZA, Ol’ Dirty *******, and the GZA.

    Despite her resume in rap music— she says she’s the “first Asian in hip-hop” — only a small portion of The Baddest *****, which was released on September 26th, is centered around hip-hop. There is a love component here. In the mid-’90s she started learning kung fu and fell in love with a Shallon Monk named Shi Yan Ming. She left the music industry behind and put a majority of her time and effort into building Yan Ming’s brand and maintaining his Manhattan-based temple. The two would eventually go on to have two kids together before going their separate ways. (During this time there were early plans on expanding Ming’s temple.)

    After making her way back into the music industry — in various stints, including working in a senior position at Universal Music Group — Chang started to realize she spent her life helping craft the stories of men. It was time to tell her own story.

    The Baddest ***** in the Room is a compelling listen, mainly because Chang is an expert storyteller. She’s great with details and she isn’t scared to be vulnerable in public. (At various points in the book you hear her voice crack while telling an emotional story.) Lots of artists are mentioned in the book. But nothing ever feels gossipy. Sophia made a conscientious effort to keep the story centered around her and the many geniuses that orbited her. In this book, Chang is the Sun. The memoir is also super interactive; throughout you hear (sometimes grainy) audio clips from the likes of RZA, Ghostface Killah, Method Man, Raphael Saadiq, hip-hop feminist Joan Morgan and more.

    I recently sat down with Sophia Chang to talk about the making of the book, her relationship with Chris Lighty, and imagining Wu-Tang Clan’s “C.R.E.A.M.” video with women at the table.

    Check out the interview below.

    Could you have written this book 15 years ago?
    No. I wasn’t ready to write it 15 years ago. I still wasn’t interested in telling my story. I didn’t yet think that it was worthy of telling. Also, 15 years ago, my children were two and four…and [at those ages] you’re in the thick of it. There’s no way I would’ve been ready. I was still with my ex. I was running this temple. [There] was way too much going on.

    Did you have an epiphany moment?
    There were two things that happened. I started working at Universal Music Group. And I took on a number of young women fresh out of college — many of them 22 at the time — as mentees. It occurred to me, given my vast experience, having worked so many different jobs in so many different sectors, I could use my experience to help teach people. That was number one. Number two: [Sheryl Sandberg’s book] Lean In came out. Lean In had some really great messages. But that is written from a very specific perspective, and I had originally conceived of this book as a Lean In for women of color.

    It turned into a very traditional chronological memoir. But I do really hope that people, particularly women of color, glean messages from it.
    continued next post
    Gene Ching
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  7. #37
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    Continued from previous post


    Photo Credit: Gary Gershoff/Getty Images

    You left a career in music essentially for love and family.
    It wasn’t a conscious decision. It’s not like I sat there and said, “OK Sophia, you’re leaving this world and now you’re going to into that world.” It was a pretty organic transition, and I didn’t really think that hard about it.

    One of my editors asked me when I was writing, “Did you ever regret leaving any of those jobs?” And as a personal philosophical philosophy, I do not believe in regret. I don’t experience regret like that. So if I **** up — and I **** up plenty — I am regretful that I’ve hurt somebody’s feelings and then I address it and I apologize. As somebody who is self-analyzing ,self-interrogating, self-critical, and self-renewing, I am constantly taking stock of what it is that I do, how I behave, and how I could have modified my behavior for a better outcome.

    That means that once I make that analysis that I am learning something — learning something means that I have gained a lesson. A lesson, to me, is a gift. So I don’t live with regret in general and I never looked back. It wasn’t until I was writing this memoir that I went, “Wow, you know what? I might be a record company president right now.” And there’s no part of me that says “****! I made the wrong decision.” Because it wasn’t just for love that I left. It was also because I believed so deeply in Yan Ming and his vision for building the Shaolin Temple in upstate New York.

    Why do you think Wu-Tang hovered towards you in the beginning?
    When I met Wu-Tang it was before the album came out, but everybody knew they were going to be huge. We only had to hear “Protect ya Neck” once to know, Oh ****, these guys are going to blow the **** up. So there were hundreds of people around them, all clamoring for access. And here comes this petite Asian, Canadian woman in the midst of them.

    They just plucked me out of the crowd and they not only welcomed me, they claimed me. Now why do I think that was? I never had an agenda. I never had ulterior motives. I had [three] things: I was a devoted fan, but there were plenty of those. Number two: I love them deeply as people. And number three: I only ever wanted what was in their best interest. I say in my memoir being embraced by the Clan was amazing because I felt truly seen. And my friend said, “You know, don’t you think it’s possible that they would say the same thing? That when they met you, they felt seen because they were seen in one way. and then here comes Sophia Chang and you just cut through everything and you see them for their humanity?”

    The bonus content [on the book] to me is some of the richest content. I specifically asked Ghostface Killa and Raekwon this question, “Why me, you guys, why did you choose me?” And they both put it up to the Most High. They both said “It’s God’s plan, Soph. You were supposed to be there with us.” Ghost was like “You’re like sunshine, Soph.” And Raekwon said “You were a gift to us. You were instrumental in the things that we did.” And I never knew they thought of me that way. I just thought that I was somebody that they loved dearly who was just kind of in the midst.

    The other thing that Ghost said is “You never ever changed. Ever.” And Busta Rhymes said this to me last year, he said, “You’re the most consistent person I’ve ever met in hip-hop. We met you before Leaders of the New School was signed. When I had my solo career. When I was up, when I was down. You never changed.”

    One of the things I found interesting is that you talk about how you learned about your Asian roots through hip-hop.
    I am Asian, and I was born and raised in Vancouver. So I am a yellow girl in a white world. And what I wanted more than anything, when I was a kid, was to be white. And then in 12th grade, I hear “The Message” by Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five and it’s an amazing song. And of course the lyrics are incredible and the beats are amazing.

    I understand now, in retrospect, but I think that one of the things that really struck me was that I was hearing a song about a story about people of color by people of color as opposed to what I saw. Which, when I saw people of color, it was all through Hollywood’s lens, which is a white male lens. And so hip-hop to me was so much about agency in storytelling and defiance and pride. And I never ever seen that before. So that was really regulatory. And then I moved to New York, I get into hip-hop, and I’m very close friends with many of the artists in the Native Tongues movement: De La Soul, Jungle Brothers, A Tribe Called Quest, Latifa, Monie Love, Leaders of the New School. And, you know, they’re part of this Afro-centric movement, which focuses a lot on yearning for a deeper connection to Africa — their motherland.

    And so that kind of sparked curiosity in me. And it makes me think about my own connection to my own continent, which is Asia. Korean was my first language. I lost it in my desire to assimilate. I wanted to be white. I didn’t think that Asian men were attractive. At one point. I didn’t like Korean food, like it was just this very broad, really wide rejection of my culture. And then I meet Wu-Tang clan. They were raised in Staten Island and they call their borough Shaolin and their whole ethos on [Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)] was all about Kung-fu movies and John Woo movies.

    So not only am I seeing this really incredible, robust culture of period martial arts movies, but now I’m getting a lens on modern age masculinity through John Woo’s eyes. And you know his muse is Chow Yun-fat and Chow Yun-fat, to me, is like the handsomest man that’s ever walked this planet. That was also regulatory for me. And so their respect for, and reverence and love of Asian culture helped open my eyes to it, but it wasn’t until I met them that I let all of the blocks fall away. It was kind of through the chambers of Wu-Tang that I ultimately came back to myself.

    If it wasn’t for Wu-Tang, I wouldn’t have started training in Kung-Fu. I wouldn’t have met Yan Ming. If didn’t meet Yan Ming I wouldn’t have my children. I mean I owe a lot to the Wu-Tang clan.

    In the book you talk about the last time you saw Ol’ Dirty ******* and the fact that he just wasn’t present. Was there any part of you that wanted to sugarcoat that story?
    One of the things that I think listeners will be struck by is how many times I say “God rest his soul” or “God rest her soul” in my memoir. I’m only 54 years old and other than my father — God rest his soul — who was 80 when he passed, everybody that I lose leaves in an untimely fashion. I think that, yes, naturally it was hard for me to write and it was hard for me to narrate. You know, that’s one of the things that I knew about my memoir, and that it was going to be an audiobook: I insisted that I had to read it I had to be the voice behind the story. Because another reader — let’s say we’d hired a professional actor — they would not have been able to emote the way that I did, especially when it came to loss.

    And in terms of sugarcoating things or holding things back, there’s plenty more I could have put in this memoir. I’ve been around famous people for 32 years, but I never intended to write a tell-all. I’m not interested in that. If somebody came along to me today and said, “Sophia, I’ll give you $5 million if you’ll write the tell-all, and you’ll tell us all the dirt on all the famous people you know” I wouldn’t even hesitate, to say no. I have no interest in telling anybody else’s story unless it is part of my narrative.

    So when I was shopping my book deal — and it was competitive — there were two things that I said, and I said the same thing when I was looking around for agents: number one is that it’s my voice. I write this ****. I am far from the best writer in the world, but I’ll tell you what, I’m not going to ****ing let somebody else try to capture my voice. Number two: I refuse to write a book about being with greatness, meaning hanging out with celebrities because that is, to me, an exercise in narcissism.

    I found Chris Lighty to be a very interesting and mysterious presence in the book. Did you, did you ever feel like you fully understood him?
    Yeah. I think I fully understood him, but did I know everything that was going on in his life? No. And I think those are two different things.

    I knew who Chris Lighty was, but I didn’t know the burden that he was bearing. I couldn’t say I understand everything that was going on in his life. But I understood Chris. Absolutely I did.
    continued next post
    Gene Ching
    Publisher www.KungFuMagazine.com
    Author of Shaolin Trips
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  8. #38
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    Continued from previous post

    What do you tell people who have questions about the music industry in general? Like what are things you tell them that wish you knew as a 22-year-old?
    Let’s reframe the question. I was in the music business, pre-digital, so it’s very, very different. I’m in an industry that is flushed with cash, so everything is different. So let’s reframe it this way. What would I tell a 22-year-old getting into the business now? If they want to manage artists, I say, “OK, go ahead and do it. But you better be OK with not making any money unless you’re somehow going to manage an artist who already has a robust touring merchandise and endorsement or sponsorship career because otherwise you’re not making money.” And that’s OK. I don’t care. You don’t have to make money. But you have to know that going in. And for that reason, be passionate about your artists because you will go in and you will be their proxy and you will need to sell the **** out of them.

    They have to be on top of everything because hopefully when get as big and successful as you want, they’re going to be many, many, many balls in the air. Raphael Sadiq said about me, ” Soph, you never let a ball drop.” And RZA said “You’re the most organized person I ever met.” And those might sound like banal skills. What I realized now is [how imporant] those things are when you have so much stuff going on.



    I love the part in the book when you talk about helping Rakeon with the “C.R.E.A.M” video, and you mentioned how there shouldn’t be women in the video. But, looking back, you now wish you had women in there around the table as CEOs.
    My ideas about everything are still evolving. I’m sure there are things that I wrote and that I say today that in a few years I’m going to say, “well that was stupid” or “that was ignorant.” You know, I’m still learning. I’m just constantly evolving and pushing myself to be better. And I surround myself with people who are smarter than me, who can check me if necessary.

    There’s a line in my memoir where I say, “Rae, you know what I love about Wu-Tang and about the [36 Chambers] album is that there are no women in it.” He’s like, “yeah, you get it Soph.” And then I said to him, “What I do… the 28-year-old me is happy because there are no women in it because they were so objectified at the time. But the 54-year-old me wishes that you’d put a woman in there at the table with you as your peer. “And he was like, of course Soph, but it’s a different time. He totally understood that.

    So yeah, things change, you know, hopefully we continue to evolve and we continue to get smarter and better and we just keep growing.

    Is there anything you want to add?
    What’s next for me, is public speaking. It’s not even that it’s next. I started public speaking before I even wrote a book. I know that God put me on this planet to put a mic in my hand and have me on stage, you know, just like an MC, except I’m not a talented artist like that.

    I honestly think I’m the greatest public speaker I’ve ever seen. I mean that from the bottom of my ****ing heart. I don’t think there’s anybody better than me. And I don’t think there’s anybody that can deliver my message. Who could deliver my message? My name is Sophia Chang, and I was raised by Wu-Tang. I’m the Korean-Canadian immigrant who was a French literature major who was raised by Wu-Tang Clan and who was partnered with and had children and ran the business of a Shaolin monk. So all of that kind of crazy diverse experiences hone this voice and this voice is supposed to be shared with the world.

    I mean, RZA knew it. He was like, “I can hear you. I can imagine that you are going to be in arenas talking to 25,000 people.”


    Photo Credit: Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images for Audible
    I've been doing the Sophia Chang thread a disservice by not copying it to the Wu Forever thread.[/QUOTE]
    Gene Ching
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    Author of Shaolin Trips
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  9. #39
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    III Points 2020

    Photo by Kyle Christy

    Wu-Tang Clan's RZA: III Points 2020 Will Mark "a New Display of Our Creativity and Talent"
    KAT BEIN | JANUARY 30, 2020 | 8:40AM

    RZA's last great Miami memory includes a potent mixture of weed, '70s kung fu flicks, and tequila shots till sunrise. It was April 2018, and the Wu-Tang Clan figurehead had come to town to headline III Points' annual 4/20-themed event, III Joints. For his performance, RZA crafted a live hip-hop soundtrack to The 36th Chamber of Shaolin, a Hong Kong cinema classic and seminal text in the Wu canon. It was half rap concert, half film screening, and all serious smoke-out.

    “Everybody was really smoking and sippin',” RZA remembers. “There was moments where the audience was just engaged by what was on the screen, but there was moments where the audience gave in to the hip-hop performance that was happening, jumping up and down, throw your hands up in the air [stuff]. That was a very unique experience: outdoors, Miami, and the weather was beautiful.”

    When III Joints wrapped, RZA and crew took the party to the downtown Miami nightclub Floyd. Shortly after joining Call Super — the DJ visiting that night — behind the booth, the rapper, producer, and all-around creative force let the Miami spirit take over, found a mike, and began MC'ing over the house mix bumping through the venue. Soon enough, dancers were being invited up for free tequila shots from Bobby Digital himself.

    “I definitely was pouring a lot of shots into a lot of glasses,” he recalls. “One thing about me: When I party and I get loose, I just go with the flow.”

    Things will undoubtedly flow once again come May, when the full Wu-Tang Clan will join RZA for a headlining set at III Points' full-fledged music festival. The Clan is preparing to mark the start of the 2020s as a new era for the group and will arrive in Miami armed with a whole new set list and stage production.

    It's a welcome return: Since 2015, a member of Wu-Tang has played at least one III Points event per year. Ghostface Killah was the first to come through in 2015, followed by a hyped-up performance from Method Man and Wu affiliate Redman in 2016. III Points brought the full Clan through for a standalone concert during Art Basel 2017 and then called upon RZA for the 2018 edition of III Joints. Last year's festival saw a return from Ghostface, joined by Raekwon for a full performance of the 1995 classic Only Built 4 Cuban Linx...

    “I mean, we love Miami, right?” RZA says. “It's always iconic to go there; we get that good Cuban food. Usually I don't eat until after the show, but I eat twice before the show [in Miami]. When invitations come from that city, we're trying to RSVP. If you guys want us to come, we want to come, and that's what we do.”



    Wu-Tang Clan's last performance in Miami was heavy on songs from the group's seminal 1993 debut LP, Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers).

    “It was sold-out to capacity,” RZA recalls, “and the energy was high. On that particular night, we actually brought in our stage set from New York, where we turned the stage to look like our neighborhood. What a night – I mean, what a weekend.”

    This year, the group brought on a new creative developer, who, along with the long-term team, is designing a new stage production intended to bring the Wu-niverse into a new dimension. The set list is also getting a major face-lift, a treat for any Killer Bees looking for more solo Wu members and full Clan deep cuts during live shows.

    “There's a lot of great songs in the catalog that don't get a lot of concert play for whatever reason,” RZA says. “The first call we had this week was changing our set list in a more cinematic, dynamic way."

    It makes sense that RZA and the Clan would want to update their presentation for a new decade: vivid imagery and a flair for the theatrical have always been cornerstones of the Wu-Tang aesthetic. Across the group's discography, songs and albums are filled with movie samples and sound effects that help graft indelible imagery onto listeners' minds.

    “Wu-Tang came out even before DVDs,” RZA laughs. “That may not sound like reality, but it is. There was no TV in your headrest; that didn't happen 'till late '96, '97.

    "When we made 36 Chambers, Only Built 4 Cuban Linx..., and Liquid Swords, Ironman, the goal was that the audience would have an audiovisual experience; I was trying to make movies with those albums," he continues. "I'm from the generation of New Yorkers that, for good and bad reasons, used to travel out of state. Whether it was traveling down to Howard University to go to homecoming, on to Atlanta Freaknik, or going down to South Beach... I made [Wu-Tang Clan's music] with the idea of helping that road trip be cool for you.”

    While the exact dimension and flavor of Wu-Tang's 2020 III Points headline set can't yet be defined, RZA is **** sure it's gonna be a movie of its own.

    “We're striving — and I say 'striving' because you've got to strive, and if you get it, get it,” he says, "but we are striving to make this a new display of our creativity and our talent through our concerts. You guys will be among some of the first to see it this year.”

    Indeed, the Wu hasn't held a single stateside performance since its popular Hulu series Wu-Tang: An American Saga first aired late last year. Animated by all of the renewed hype, RZA and the Clan are ready to ride a wave of innovation into the next chapter of their ongoing story.

    “We have a lot of new fans getting engaged by us,” he says. “We're just looking forward to getting in front of them with the crew. This is foundation, and [we want] people to understand why Wu-Tang Clan ain't nothing to eff with.”

    III Points 2020. With Wu-Tang Clan, Robyn, the Strokes, Disclosure, and others. Friday, May 1, and Saturday, May 2, at Mana Wynwood, 318 NW 23rd St., Miami; 305-573-0371; manawynwood.com. Tickets cost $99 to $249 via iiipoints.com.
    They're coming to the Oracle on February 21. Hopefully I can make that.

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  10. #40
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    Hip-Hop & the martial arts

    And to think...I put the RZA on the cover over 20 years ago...


    SEP 1999


    Hip-hop’s obsession with combat imagery is about more than violence
    February 24, 2020 10.53am EST

    Warrick Moses
    Postdoctoral Fellow in Hip-Hop Studies, University College Cork

    Disclosure statement
    Warrick Moses receives funding from the European Research Council as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow with the CIPHER Hip Hop Interpellation project, hosted by University College Cork, Ireland.
    Partners
    University College Cork
    University College Cork provides funding as a member of The Conversation UK.


    Members of Wu-Tang Clan at Glastonbury 2019. The group took their name from the 1983 Kung Fu film Shaolin and Wu Tang. Wikimedia, CC BY-SA

    On Let the Rhythm Hit ‘Em, legendary New York MC Rakim proclaims: “I’m the arsenal, I got artillery, lyrics are ammo….”

    Senegalese-born French rapper MC Solaar compares his mic to body armour and warns listeners about his cache of lyrical bullets halfway through La Concubine de l’Hémoglobine (The Haemoglobin Concubine): “…le mic est devenu ma tenue combat … le Solaarsenal est équipé de balles vocales …”.

    Kendrick Lamar refers to himself as Kung Fu Kenny throughout the album ****, a reference to Don Cheadle’s character in the 2001 buddy cop and martial arts film Rush Hour 2 starring Jackie Chan.



    As all these examples confirm, it’s a common practice for rappers to equate verbal prowess with martial skill. MCs “spit” incendiary lines. Breakdancers “battle” for supremacy on the dance floor. DJs “cut” samples to their own liking. Graffiti artists “bomb” public spaces with tags.

    Critics of hip-hop music and culture denounce such imagery as encouraging actual violence. They often cite graphic examples from commercial American “gangsta rap” to make their case. Yet from the research in which I have been involved, there’s a whole other way of looking at this imagery that casts hip-hop in a very different light.
    continued next post
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  11. #41
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    Continued from previous post

    Planet rap

    Musicologist Griff Rollefson offers a different view of this tendency for hip-hop MCs to use their “words as weapons”. For members of marginalised communities, he argues, hip-hop potentially offers “a discursive and performative field in which to vent frustrations, enact fantasies, build confidence and formulate plots”. It’s a cathartic space free from threat of physical harm or retaliation from authorities.

    I would argue that the metaphors of combat in global hip-hop are often concerned with messages of empowerment and social action. The seeming violence of such expressions serves as a means for practitioners to channel their dissatisfaction with adverse social conditions through creative artistry. On her 2019 track Land of Gray, for instance, South African MC Yugen Blakrok “dismembers a fascist” with her incisive “verbal blades”.



    In another instance, Japanese rapper Zeebra fires off a lyrical “bullet of truth”, changing listeners’ thought patterns and “slowly directing brain cells” toward more enlightened ways of being (Saishu Heiki, 2005).
    continued next post
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  12. #42
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    Continued from previous post

    Musical art to martial art

    At a time when issues of migration, secession and isolationism dominate, an in-depth study of the impact of global forms of hip-hop marks an important change in political and cultural perspectives. As part of the CIPHER initiative, Rollfeson, the researcher Jason Ng and I are investigating hip-hop’s social importance and re-evaluating its stigmas. The aim is to shift the focus from a strictly US context to look at models from around the world.

    Rollefson’s idea that hip-hop is a “martial art” is a part of this approach. Not only does it position rap within its contemporary context but it also considers the culture’s deep indebtedness to Kung Fu cinematic lore and East Asian philosophy.

    Take the Wu-Tang Clan’s debut album Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers). The title references the classic martial arts movies Enter the Dragon (1973) starring Bruce Lee, and The 36th Chamber of Shaolin (1978).

    Busta Rhymes’ video for the 1997 track Dangerous, directed by Hype Williams (who made some of the period’s most well-known hip-hop videos), takes its inspiration from the 1985 classic The Last Dragon.

    Ask any old-skool hip-hop head “Who is the master?” and they’ll answer, “Sho’nuff!”. This scene is played out in the music video with Rhymes taking the role of martial arts master Sho’nuff. For brown and black kids growing up in the socioeconomically repressed Bronx of the 1980s, what’s a more aspirational narrative, what’s more hip-hop, than the tale of a lone warrior acting decisively, but only when provoked?



    This influence also manifests globally, but in very different ways. Irish MC Jun Tzu (his nom de guerre a nod to Chinese military strategist Sun Tzu), often highlights the continued need for unity in his hometown of Belfast after the Troubles. In the single Klik Klak – the title imitating the sound of a pistol being racked and readied to fire – the South African rapper Cream declares: “I’m Jackie Chan with a pen… I defend rappers in my clan…”

    Just as martial arts principles are handed down from teacher to disciple, hip-hop MCs spread ideological “truths” through their music. Global practitioners of hip-hop in particular prioritise a resistive aesthetic – an awareness of cultural identity, personal expression and a fundamental “knowledge of self” in their work.

    The notion of hip-hop as a martial art also helps to illustrate the community-oriented ethos of the culture. In the cipher, which is the name given to hip-hop performance gatherings, MCs hone their skills and “sharpen their blades” in lyrical combat. This rite of passage, where performers are called on to demonstrate their talents and be evaluated by peers, exemplifies the “each one teach one” approach that characterises much of global hip-hop.
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  13. #43
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    The Story Behind the New Ice Cream Truck Jingle from Good Humor x RZA

    Gene Ching
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  14. #44
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    This one is kinda funny.

    CHINA'S FUMING OVER CANADIAN DIPLOMAT ORDERING PRINTED 'WU-HAN' T-SHIRTS WITH WU-TANG CLAN LOGO
    The Canadian Embassy has apologised for the 'Wu-han' T-shirts with the Wu-Tang logo

    DAVE TURNER 2 FEBRUARY 2021


    China is fuming over a Canadian diplomat reportedly ordering T-shirts with the word 'Wu-Han' printed in what looks like the Wu-Tang Clan logo.

    Those familiar with Wu-Tang will know the hip hop group's logo resembles a bat, the animal that is rumoured to have started the coronavirus in the Chinese city of Wuhan.

    Images of the order - which Canada has apologised for circulated on Chinese social media site Weibo. The order was apparently made last year, says the Canadian embassy.

    Foreign ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin said: “We are very shocked by this and have lodged representations with Canada, asking for a thorough investigation and a clear explanation."

    The Canadian embassy told Reuters: “The T-shirt logo designed by a member of the Embassy shows a stylized W, and is not intended to represent a bat. It was created for the team of Embassy staff working on repatriation of Canadians from Wuhan in early 2020. We regret the misunderstanding."

    Although Wu-Tang Clan have nothing to do with the T-shirts, the group's ethos stems from Shaolin, a style of Chinese kung fu. Their name and debut album 'Enter The Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)' takes inspiration from 1983 Hong Kong martial arts film Shaolin and Wu Tang.

    Read this next: Netflix to make a film about Martin Shkreli buying Wu-Tang Clan's one-off album

    Wu-Tang's RZA was nominated for Outstanding Original Main Title Theme Music For a Documentary Series or Special category at the Emmys last year, for his work on Hulu show Wu-Tang: An American Saga.

    Despite COVID-19 originating in Wuhan - and the city making up a high amount of deaths in China - life is more or less back to normal there. Back in August, a packed pool party with thousands in attendance was thrown.

    Watch our interview from 2019 with Wu-Tang Clan below.


    Dave Turner is Mixmag's Commercial Content Editor, follow him on Twitter
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  15. #45
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    Alamo Drafthouse bankruptcy

    See RZA + Alamo Drafthouse introduce The Flying Guillotine | 360° Tour

    ALAMO DRAFTHOUSE CINEMA FILES FOR CHAPTER 11 BANKRUPTCY
    6 hours ago by: Gaius Bolling



    Texas-based theater chain, Alamo Drafthouse, has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The filing comes along with an asset purchase agreement with Altamont Capital Partners, a previous investor in the company. A new backer, Fortress Investment Group, and its affiliates are also a part of the purchase agreement.

    Chapter 11 does sound like doom and gloom for the theater chain that became a big hit with moviegoers due to its focus on the movie fans and their dine-in service but this filing will give the chain the capital it needs to allow operations to run as normal as they emerge from the ramifications of the COVID-19 pandemic. Like most exhibitors, Alamo Drafthouse locations were closed for months beginning last March.

    Alamo Drafthouse is headquartered in Austin, Texas, and runs roughly 40 locations with other prominent locations being Los Angeles, Brooklyn, and Northern Virginia. As part of the bankruptcy filing, Alama Drafthouse will close down a few underperforming locations and restructure their lease obligations. There is no word as of yet which locations will be closed due to the filing. Founder Tim League will remain involved with the company and among the lender group buying assets and Shelli Taylor, who will be assuming the role of CEO, had this to say about the latest turn of events:

    "Alamo Drafthouse had one of its most successful years in the company’s history in 2019 with the launch of its first Los Angeles theater and box office revenue that outperformed the rest of the industry. We’re excited to work with our partners at Altamont Capital Partners and Fortress Investment Group to continue on that path of growth on the other side of the pandemic, and we want to ensure the public that we expect no disruption to our business and no impact on franchise operations, employees and customers in our locations that are currently operating."
    The news about Alamo Drafthouse comes on the heels of what could be a return to semi-normal theater operations just around the corner. Shuttered theaters in New York City are set to reopen on March 5, 2021, and Los Angeles is reportedly mere weeks from announcing that their theaters will be reopening as well, albeit, at limited capacity. Many exhibitors believe that there will likely be a revival of moviegoing by the summer as vaccinations continue to increase. Oddly enough in Texas, where Alamo Drafthouse is headquartered, the mask mandate was just lifted and they reopening their state at 100 percent capacity.

    Alamo Drafthouse is known for its love for cinephiles and its focus on the pure theatrical experience. They have hosted numerous fan events that are movie-related and they are known for enforcing rules, such as "no talking", with a much stricter policy than other chains. I'm happy that this filing allows them to operate as normal but bummed for the underperforming locations that will have to close in the near future. There is the concern that the new partners involved may try to change things down the line but that's something we'll have to wait and see. The pandemic has certainly kneecapped the exhibition business but hopefully, all of these signs of reopening are an indication that they're coming out on the other side of it.
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