by A. Smith
The Wu-Tang Clan have a new mini series called Wu-Tang: An American Saga. The mini-series is showing on Hulu and it has been very interesting and fascinating. The Hip Hop group started in the early 1990’s and have become one of the most iconic groups and solo artists in Hip Hop history. Their first album Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) was a great success, which allowed the group members to have successful solo careers and have deals with other record labels.
The Actors in the TV series have really embodied the artists and it’s amazing to see their humble beginnings. The casts include Dave East (Method Man), Ashton Sanders (RZA), Siddiq Saunderson (Ghostface Killah), Shameik Moore (Raekwon), TJ Atoms (Ol’ Dirty Bastard- ODB’s son unfortunately did not get the role), Johnell Xavier (GZA), Joey Badass (Inspectah Deck) and Caleb Castille as Darryl "Chino" Hill (Cappadonna), Erika Alexander (Linda Diggs- RZA’s mum), Zolee Griggs as Shurrie Diggs, Julian Elijah Martinez as Divine Diggs and Marcus Callender as Power Grant.
The groups last album was released in 2015, called ‘Once Upon a Time in Shaolin’ and The Saga Continues (a compilation album). However most of the them are still continuing with their solo projects and still involved in everything Wu-Tang with merchandises, tours and even a Wu- Tang Clan MetroCard to promote the TV series.
RZA has not only produced the Wu-Tang albums and solo projects, he has scored on some films such as Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai and Kill Bill. He has also appeared in TV shows and films such as American Gangster and had his directorial debut with The Man with the Iron Fists. He also the executive producer of the TV mini-series. You can also check out an interview he did with Vanity Fair on YouTube about the 10 Kung Fu movies he has sampled. I was today years old when I found out RZA is married to Talani Rabb who was a model. If you grew up in the 90’s you would recognise her from LL Cool J’s video ‘Doin It’ and Diddy’s video ‘Satisfy You’.
Ghostface Killah released his 13th album ‘Ghostface Killahs’ his son Sun God is featured on a track called ‘Fly Everything’ and ‘The Chase’ and his fellow Wu-Tang members Method Man, Cappadonna, Masta Killah, and Inspectah Deck are on tracks like; ‘Me, Denny & Darryl’. ‘Burner to Burner’, ‘Waffles and Ice Cream and ‘Soursop’. Other artists featured on the album include Shawn Wigs, Solomon Childs, Eamon and Harley.
Method Man has had a great year with features on tracks like Teyana Taylor and
performing with Mary at the BET Awards. He recently was on the Jimmy Kimmel show and mentioned how he has a podcast called Marvels. Fun fact he has over 30,000 comic books, he has been collecting since he was 13 years old.
GZA was recently on Rapsody’s single ‘Ibtihaj’ and he absolutely demolished his part, as he raps: “Well written rap, bound to have a great impact/ On a listener for the fact it's well intact/ An MC should electrify, beautify, strive to/ Empower, inspire, transform a world view.” *Speechless*
U-God released his autobiography called Raw: My Journey Into The Wu-Tang in 2018 alongside his album called Venom. Chance The Rapper gave a shout out to the emcee, in his song ‘We Go High’; “and throw up the woo (Wu) like U-God”.
U-God will be coming to Walthamstow Jazz Festival 2020, in London, UK. You can purchase your tickets here: https://dice.fm/event/6eyeq-walthamstow-jazz-festival-2020-15th-feb-truman-brewery-walthamstow-london-tickets?_branch_match_id=706205569704163124
Raekwon released his album ‘The Wild’ in 2017, he has his own wine Licataa. Inspectah Deck has an album called Chamber No.9, nine years after his 2010 release ‘Manifesto’. Cappondonna’s latest solo album ‘Ear Candy; was released in 2018.
You can also catch Wu- Tang Clan: Of Mics and Men on Showtime; a documentary honouring their 25th anniversary of Wu-Tang Clan's debut album, Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers).
What are your thoughts on the mini-series?