RZA Explains Why Raekwon Isn't Working On Wu-Tang Clan's "A Better Tomorrow" Album

In regards to "The Wu - Once Upon A Time In Shaolin," RZA says he's more concerned about music being devalued than making money.

Wu-Tang Clan lyricist RZA recently clarified fellow rapper Raekwon’s standing on both The Wu - Once Upon A Time In Shaolin and A Better Tomorrow, two upcoming projects from Wu-Tang Clan.

In regards to The Wu - Once Upon A Time In Shaolin, the project the group is selling one copy of, RZA says Raekwon is on the album. But as far as A Better Tomorrow is concerned, RZA says Rae has not assisted with the creation of that particular album.

RZA revealed that he’s unsure of why exactly Raekwon hasn’t participated, but feels creative differences may be to blame.

“There’s two things that’s going on,” he said during an interview with Vlad TV. “Let me be clear with you so you can put this out. There’s an album called Once Upon A Time In Shaolin that will be a single piece of art in a beautiful encasing. That belongs in a museum or art gallery. That’s where it belongs. And then there’s another album that belongs to the consumers called A Better Tomorrow. And that belongs to the consumers because it’s a celebration of Wu-Tang and their fans. And Raekwon has not been participating with that particular record. I haven’t had a chance to really talk to him about why not. All I see is the press going back and forth. But I would say that maybe creatively we on different paths. I’m creatively different than I was in the ‘90s.”

Prior to speaking on Raekwon, RZA addressed The Wu - Once Upon A Time In Shaolin, which has reportedly received offers of up to $5 million. The New York City musician says he’s received numerous offers from people hoping to get their hands on the lone project, but is more impressed with the response he’s received from his peers praising the idea.

“It’s gonna be many offers. It’s a lot of offers coming in,” RZA said. “But more than offers coming in, there’s a lot of—There’s more people responding to the artistic nature of it. You know? A lot of my peers in big places are sending me emails like ‘Great idea. Perfect idea. World-changing idea.’ And that’s the goal. I mean, money, I make money. As you can see you’re sitting with me right here on the set of a—promoting a movie. So, it’s not about the money. It was more about music being devalued. And us mistaking what it means to us. Music chronicles time. It captures a moment.”

The Wu - Once Upon A Time In Shaolin will reportedly consist of 31 songs. The physical album will be housed in an engraved silver-and-nickel box.

There’s no word yet on when A Better Tomorrow will be released, but the project has been heavily-discussed by members of the Wu-Tang Clan. During an interview with The Breakfast Club in February, Raekwon revealed that there were “a lot of issues” surrounding the album. And while speaking with Grantland.com last year, RZA revealed the names of the Wu-Tang emcees who’ve shown up the most while recording A Better Tomorrow.

"And one of the guys who showed up the most was Method Man," he said. "He showed the most tenacity, he was the most vocal, he showed up the most, and he got the most lyrics on the new album. He's already recorded eight or nine songs. He’s been on it. You know, I give Cappadonna credit, he’s been really on it. U-God has been present. Masta Killa be representing. Inspectah Deck has been somewhat present. Ghost has been, you know, 20 percent present. And Raekwon hasn't shown up at all."

105 Comments

  • Anonymous

    RZA sound like he lyin for real. He dont know why rae aint on the album??? come on bro. u havent reached out? seriously? dam lies. he know he dickin these niggas on money

    • Anonymous

      nah nigga. a lot of dope spitters ahead of are in the group: gza, deck, meth, ghost, cappadonna. are babbles words like lebanese or mexicanese over and over again. FOH!

  • Bulletproof Wallets

    OUATIS is Cilvaringz's album, not RZA's

  • Anonymous

    As long as that guy with no penis is on it, it will be solid.

  • Allah Will Punish You Blasphemous Nikkas

    That's what you get for claiming to be Gods.

  • Anonymous

    I've noticed how y'all who are angry as f-ck at RZA for this $5m one-only album are overlooking there's more than one Wu member on that project if the guy who don't wanna make the "fan friendly" album, Raekwon, is on that album. Like I said when the news broke, y'all only mad because he ain't catering to you. The same guy who you saw changed the game with his contractual vision, art of rhyme and style, has even been @ a Shaolin monastery, done movies & soundtracks, should just play his "n!gg3r" role and please his "massas". So y'all keep telling on yourselves.

  • The_Observer

    There is never mention of GZA?

  • Raekwon

    Like I told you in the Hot97 interview, pay me my money proper!

  • Anonymous

    I'm sorry I thought this was "Rza explains why Raekwon isn't working on the new album" not "Rza gives bullshit excuses as to why Raekwon isn't working on the new album." smh Rza- "I havent had a chance to really talk to him about why not" PICK UP THE FUCKING PHONE AND CALL HIM MAYBE???

    • Raekwon

      ya'll got that right. Rza won't split the pie evenly. check my Hot97 interview on youtube.

    • venom

      I feel you exactly. I hate this f*g. He thinks he is good at everything. People saw how ridicilous director&actor he was. His ego as huge as Kanye. There is one thing he is good at: Bullsh*ting!!!

  • Anonymous

    Doesn't RZA own the group's name and all that shit? I wouldn't doubt it if he all of sudden decided to kick everybody out the group, after all, he's their MASTER.

  • Brizz

    This site gets more retarded for every minute. Jeezez. Headline! "RZA Explains Why Raekwon Isn't Working On Wu-Tang Clan's "A Better Tomorrow" Album" Actual answer from RZA... "RZA revealed that hes unsure of why exactly Raekwon hasnt participated, but feels creative differences may be to blame." How does that qualify as a explenation? Maybe it could go as an assumption...maybe. Lazy assholes...

  • chico

    no raekwon means more killa sin and baretta 9

  • RGeezy

    So what Rza is really saying is,all the members who have struggled to stand on their own and Method Man, who hasn't put out a solo album in 8 years are participating.But the 2 guys, Ghost and Rae who have stayed active, are not. Rza keeps playing dumb when it comes to Rae, when he knows the real reason Rae isn't messing with him is due to business/money.

  • DETROIT SLIM

    "heres an album called Once Upon A Time In Shaolin that will be a single piece of art in a beautiful encasing. That belongs in a museum or art gallery. Thats where it belongs." Nigga, its just another rap album with yall talkin about guns,weed,liquor,money, n hoes. Dont get it twisted. You aint salvador dali

  • Anonymous

    Same article recycled over & over & over & over, for fuck's sake write something new.

  • FUCK SOUL TEMPLE MUSIC

    YO RZA WE STILL WAITING ON THOSE RECORDS YOU SAID WERE FINALLY GOING TO BE SHIPPED OUT 2 MONTHS AGO. ITS BEEN OVER A YEAR NOW SINCE THE GHOSTFACE ALBUM CAME OUT AND HUNDREDS OF US STILL DONT HAVE THE PACKAGES WE PRE ORDERED. SOME OF US ARE STILL WAITING FOR MAN WITH THE IRON FISTS BOX SETS FROM 2012. Like BOYCOTT SOUL TEMPLE MUSIC on Facebook.

  • Anonymous

    I thought the plan was he takes that 5 million or whatever and uses that to pay the rest of the clan for a full showing on A Better Tomorrow...? Least I hoped it was

  • Visceral

    It was painful to see Digi bullshit his way through that question that we clearly know the real answer to.

  • huh

    Let me be clear with you so you can put this out. Theres an album called Once Upon A Time In Shaolin that will be a single piece of art in a beautiful encasing. That belongs in a museum or art gallery. Thats where it belongs." WTF kinda stupid ass idea is this?

  • snIPez

    Shut up. Just like a tour, alot of people will never see a live concert, or even your bullshit art shows. Point is, this little "art" tour of yours will just go to big name cities. The fans lose again. And rza? Don't insult my fucking intelligence. "It's not about the money". Then says..."We are going to charge your wallet an initiation fee". STFU. I used to have respect for you. This is just fucking retarded. "CHANGE THE WORLD" Hahaha. Go do a porno with aster roth. Screech from Saved By The Bell can film it. G-g-g-g-g-g-UNOT. "RZA is really fucking these niggas over. What is he gonna say next? plus I'm renaming the group RZA Clan" Hahahah

    • God Kamina

      Moron huh? Well a section the Wu-Tang Manual talks about an incident where Method Man says that he was supposed 2 hang out with his friends but he had decided to go to RZA's studio instead. His friends ended up getting killed that night. I guess you wouldn't know something like that though.

    • Anonymous

      ^^ Spoken like a true moron.

    • AlecDawesome

      Wu-Tang wouldn't exist without RZA. All 7 other members would still be broke if not dead or in jail if not for him. he could do whatever he wants with the group and they should be kissing his ass.

    • Anonymous

      no lie you sound like an up in the rafters guy who got free tickets but ain't really a fan of the squad you want free access to the Yankee bullpen but a Met fan, lol we see you

  • Throw This Shark Nigga The Fuck Out The Group

    RZA is really fucking these niggas over. What is he gonna say next? "Wu-Tang album is coming but Meth, U-God, Ghostface, GZA, Inspectah and Masta Killah are not on it, plus I'm renaming the group RZA Clan"

    • Anonymous

      now cypher, what I'm saying is if you go thru the history Rae been that hard to lead in the right direction cat he already did this sh-t with them Immobilarity & Lex Diamond Story, no RZA, but got 2 RZA beats for OBFCL2 and was singing like he home finally for that Our Dreams RZA beat on Wu-Massacre, AND he on that one-only album but he holding out on the reunion, if it was bread, U-God & Ghost already sued RZA and still get on beats like it's nothing Rae dealing with emotions

    • Anonymous

      What's so enlightened about Rae and Ghost's lyrics? The only one on that group dropping science is GZA.

    • Anonymous

      "the math says rae been the 85 of the group" - So Rae & Ghosts enlightened and intelligent lyrics are the 5?

    • Throw This Shark Nigga The Fuck Out The Group

      Well, I'm sure RZA is the 10 percenter of the group

    • Anonymous

      the math says rae been the 85 of the group I'll let y'all tell it

  • My Hillta My Hillta

    Man I just wanna hear a fuckin 14 track album with ALL of the Generals on it with some sick RZA and Wu-Elements production....Now I know how Beatles fans felt back in the day when they were beefin over bullshit and money for so long

  • 1000W

    It hurts to hear the Wu without the late ODB...but now no lex diamonds? it's a damn shame...

  • Anonymous

    Ain't no Raekwon, Then it ain't no buying this record lol

  • CABONE

    Rae like I will get down with the project, but the business isn't right. That's the point niguhs ain't in their twenties anymore. They built a brand, it's not just niguhs in the basement trying to get on. Everybody not doing movies like RZA and Meth so it's easy for them to just show up and make music. Do business correctly and feed the people that made that W, not just the produce.

  • RZA

    There's an album called Wu Once Upon A Time In Shaolin, that's a single piece of art that belongs in a gallery or a museum. Then there's an album called A Better Tomorrow, that's a single piece of shit that belongs to the fans

  • ompo

    Rae has very limited ability to flow compared to any other Wu Members. IMO he brings the least vocally to your average Wu Banger. Deck all day.

  • Dj85

    I love Wu albums, but they need to reach out to different producers... Imagaine an album with production from Pete Rock...The Runners... Premo... Just Blaze... Alchemist... No ID... Jake one... Marco polo. The list goes one

  • Anonymous

    Fuk you talking bout RZA? No Rae? Really Son? Get off that bullshit and make some records for the people. Rae's prolly out politicin to stack ones why would he leave what he's doing to conduct a project only RZA will bank heavily from? Still on that same bullshit. Shit aint the same anyways without Dirty, so No Rae No Dirty NO WU.

    • Fuck Outta Here

      RZA makes the most from the Wu albums because he does the most work. He's producing the whole thing, and contributing lyrically. Why would they split it all up evenly. The group gets the majority of their money from shows. You telling me if Rae comes in and spits 8 verses on an album, he should make the same as the cat that is producing the entire thing AND spitting 8 verses? GTFOH

  • IROC

    Money has allways broken up groups along with egos bottom line and only die hard Wu fans suffer when grown men cant agree on nothing just to do music

  • imho

    with no raekwon it wont be a wutang album officially.. so raekwon is jumpin on the album no one except 1 person will get to hear and wont jump on the one for fans? $$

    • Anonymous

      imho's comments="please be easy when I speak in a public forum guys, I'm fragile, naive and are just being as honest as I can be" and you falling for that, lol I ain't the only one who has seen that boy say some sh*t that goes against the jewels you've left here TazZz

    • TaZzZ

      You learn to read asshole, he clearly said Rae is getting on the million dollar album and not the one for the fans, REFERRING TO 2 DIFF PROJECTS! Take you're own an advice and stop being condescending on comments sections

    • imho is some punk white kid who wants you to be passive that's why he says his fuckboy "opinion" is honest

      "Let me be clear with you so you can put this out. Theres an album called Once Upon A Time In Shaolin that will be a single piece of art in a beautiful encasing. That belongs in a museum or art gallery. Thats where it belongs. And then theres another album that belongs to the consumers called A Better Tomorrow. And that belongs to the consumers because its a celebration of Wu-Tang and their fans." ^learn how to read pussy it's T W O different projects

  • Anonymous

    "Raekwon just wants to be the 40-something year old man making the exact same records he did at 22 for the rest of his life. It's like watching some 50 year old dude hanging out in a college bar trying to pick up chicks his children's age, shit's embarrassing. If you ever did sell dope it was nearly 3 decades ago bruh, find some new material." ^ funny part is yo daddy is probably around 50, still doing the same thing since his 20's, drinking, working, loving sports, wishing for fame & fortune, trying to see if he "still got it", looking at younger women, while wondering if he wasted his life marrying yo momma and raising yo dusty ass but you worrying about Raekwon

  • Anonymous

    WU TANG FOREVER. Get it together my niggas

  • Anonymous

    Raekwon tired of being swindled out of money by RZA. Rae and Ghost the most legit members of the clan anyway so RZA knows he not puttin any shit out without their 100% participation.

    • Anonymous

      Ghost just put out an album on RZA's label (which ended up ripping off thousands of fans).

    • Anonymous

      ...and you know this, how? Wanna be know it all ass fuck nigga?

    • Anonymous

      Rae can't begin a rhyme without saying "ay-yo, ay-yo" and half the stuff he says is buried in slang that only he understands. His non-sequitur lines are hit and miss as compared to Ghost who has completely mastered that type of composition.

  • Anonymous

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  • Hip Hop GOD

    The Alpha & The Omega... Soundcloud.com/p-ez-2

  • Belize

    On the flip side, Ghost stay on point without Rae.

  • Belize

    Raekwon w/o Ghostface is overrated

  • Not Impressed

    I never like Raekwon, he has always done suspect things and comes across as a money hungry phony. He's been isolating himself since the beginning. From putting out his sophomore album with next to no Wu involvement, to publicly bashing the last Wu album and RZA, to dissing Jay-Z and Kanye than sucking them off when they call for features, to saying he hates gay people than praising Macklemore because he thinks gay is "in style" now to this bullshit. He only cares about himself and what can produce a pay check. He owes his whole life to the Wu-Tang Clan and RZA, he should be involved with that shit even if he's working for FREE because without that he would be nothing and have nothing. His skill set is too limited to have an ego that big, all he does is say the same gibberish on every song. I'm not impressed

    • Anonymous

      @not impressed. Very well said

    • Anonymous

      they should almost have equal input as RZA. Rza the mastermind of this business plan and they be the directors, chairman of the board, as in equal owners whose running and insight into the operation is just as equally valued. Not managed like an ordinary paid worker.

    • Anonymous

      but rae gotta take a cut.

    • Anonymous

      I don't think he owes his whole life, he's one of the leading members, he earned that shit almost as much as rza did. I think they all should regard RZA as the leader, but RZA needs to also understand the accomplishments of his generals and allow their input into the album.

    • Anonymous

      dont forget the bieber song

  • CS

    Need to see this whole interview ..

  • RC

    Well that being said I've enjoyed the projects Rae has been dropping the past couple years a lot better than the stuff from RZA, so maybe he ain't the old, greedy 'has-been' alotta people been quick to label him. Rae got a good ear for beats & lets be honest progressive or not RZA's new stuff has just not been clickin' right, I'm sure if Rae ain't involved then it's a good reason.

    • Anonymous

      Rae may have an ear for beats, and played a part in success of the whole clan, but as far as RZA's beats go, no, they're not going to sound anything like the beats from the 90s (like Jay Z said, "niggas want that old shit, buy my old albums"), but you can't say all RZA's shit sound the same...as far as Rae's rhymes go, he has shown zero growth, unlike Method.

    • Anonymous

      Yep RZA has gotten creatively worse as the years progressed.

  • Anonymous

    Raekwon just wants to be the 40-something year old man making the exact same records he did at 22 for the rest of his life. It's like watching some 50 year old dude hanging out in a college bar trying to pick up chicks his children's age, shit's embarrassing. If you ever did sell dope it was nearly 3 decades ago bruh, find some new material. Ghost and RZA have moved on, and I might not always like the product but at least they try their hands at different things.

  • Anonymous

    CREAM $$$$$$$$$$$$$

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