There are few people in hip-hop that deserve to be called an auteur (the French word for author, a title reserved for consummate creators) as much as The RZA. The de-facto leader of the Wu-Tang Clan, he’s more than just a legendary producer. From the earliest days of the Wu, Rzarector was their creative visionary.
He’s also a savvy businessman who helped the Wu-Tang Clan change not just the sound of hip-hop, but the business model too. Wu was the first team to land a group record deal as well as a variety of solo deals. With Wu Wear, he became one of the first rappers with a clothing brand. He’s also written a book (The Wu-Tang Manual), composed and recorded original scores for movies like Ghost Dog: The Way of The Samurai and Kill Bill, and he even claims he helped create the technology behind Serato and Final Scratch. Oh, and he’s directing his own upcoming film, The Man With The Iron Fists. Needless to say, the man has always been at the forefront of hip-hop culture.
And now he’s got one more notch to add to his black belt in hip-hop: Headphones. Since Dr. Dre ushered in the headphone boom with his ubiquitous Beats By Dre, everyone from 50 Cent to Ludacris has been trying to get in on the action. However, unlike 50 or Luda, The Abbot actually knows a thing or two about decibels, kilohertz, and the basics of sound quality. And just like with hip-hop production in the early ‘90s, he’s one of the few people who can rival Dr. Dre’s sound with his Chambers By RZA headphones.
With the headphones going on sale today on the WeSC website as well as Guitar Center locations (they'll become more widely available at additional retailers in the coming weeks), we sat down with The RZA to talk headphones, hip-hop, and Hollywood.
Yes, he also responded to Method Man’s claims that GZA wrote many of Ol’ Dirty Bastard’s rhymes, revealed that he had to censor Raekwon and Ghostface Killah on Only Built 4 Cuban Linx, and claimed he recently gave away 10 beats to Busta Rhymes, Talib Kweli, and Nas...
Interview by Insanul Ahmed (@Incilin)