Gold Tarantula Rap With Shallah Raekwon (Interview)

By | January 26, 2013 at 7:06 pm | No comments | Featured Post, Interviews, MUSIC | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Longevity. Nah’mean? That’s what enables artists to stay fresh forever. They say hip hop died, but that can’t be, cuz if we know anything, Wu-Tang is forever. Bet that up. Check the darts on “Triumph.”

“Aiyyo that’s amazing, gun in your mouth talk, verbal foul hawk
Connect thoughts to make my man’s child walk.”
– Raekwon.

That was ’97 tho… Them kids is grown by now. Which brings us back to my key point concerning longevity. We entered the Wu Tang back in 1993. Count that up to the present day in 2013… That’s 20 years in the game and still pushing the envelope like kilos of that uncooked raw. From Playstation games and comic books to tours over seas, the clan done did that. And amongst all the acclaim, the sample clearances, the laughter and the tears, the Chef has kept his recipes gourmet. The proof’s in the pudding god, and that cash rule still applies. Shallah Raekwon blessed the first verse on “C.R.E.A.M.” and introduced mad heads to the styles of the 36th chamber. 20 years from that jump off, Rae is still flexing with that same infamous white gold tarantula.

Speaking of which, that amulet is featured prominently on the cover of Raekwon’s new mixtape, “Lost Jewlry.” Lex Diamond’s has dropped mad jewels throughout his illustrious career, so that might explain the missing four finger rings, chunky king tut necklaces and white gold. The new project is Raekwon’s precursor to some I.nternational L.uxurious A.rt, so make sure you download your fix and set a 5 course meal to the stylings of one of the illest to ever rock a mic.

Recently, ya man’s Drop Jewelz got the chance to politic with the cuban link king and chop it up about everything from silk shirts to some of his favorite memories with Ol’ Dirty Bastard. Make sure y’all check out the bulletproof fly shit and pay attention as the chef splashes blood on your apron for another go around in these here dungeons of rap.

ISM: What are you known for cooking up in the kitchen?

Shallah Raekwon: Crack rocks man. Just… Just straight heat rocks man. Just rhymes. You know? Poisonous rhymes, like I’m always gonna be brewing up some real rap. Real shit. Real nigga shit. Street shit.

ISM: All day.

Shallah Raekwon: You know what i mean?

ISM: We’re approaching the 20th anniversary of 36 chambers, and I was wondering how you and your fellow clansmen were gonna commemorate the occasion?

Shallah Raekwon: Mmm… I mean we’re gonna get together of course, and you know… Toast and celebrate. And you know hopefully we got a little run together or two to go out there on the road and share with our fans again. That’s supposedly the game plan, from what i’m hearing, but you know, we definitely gotta drop some new music and bring it in right.

ISM: Does the south show you the hospitality it’s famous for?

Shallah Raekwon: Oh yeah, the south… these are like my cousins out here. you know what I mean? They give it up. My country cousins, they show love. They’ve been doing that for years, man, you know… Everybody say I’m one of the dudes that’s responsible for giving the south a voice in New York, you know? When I did that “Skew It On The Bar-B” record with Outkast back then… You know what I mean? It’s so crazy, I seen the video on TV today. It was bugged out. It took me back.

ISM: That’s dope, they still play that on KDAY in LA too.

Shallah Raekwon: Yeah, yeah… But people, people felt like, you know, the south felt like, yo! Rae was one of them artists that seen what we was doing, and he was one of the first, first New York rappers to fuck with cats out here. So I mean, I got love all over, through the hood, whatever,

ISM: Certified.

Shallah Raekwon: Niggas embrace though. You know?

ISM: That’s right. Of course we gotta give it up to your fallen brother, you know Ol’ Dirty Bastard. I was wondering if you could share a favorite memory of you in the recording studio with him?

Shallah Raekwon: Some of the great memories I had were just getting high with him… and just, you know, not, not getting high, but getting HIGH.

ISM: Smoking some weed and all that.

Shallah Raekwon: Just drinking and you know, playing cards and shit, listening to, you know, a lot of old school music with him. He was a big Patty LaBelle fan. He was big into Marvin Gaye, The Temptations, Blue Magic, you know what I mean? I just remember when he would be singing. and we’d just be sitting there, smoked out and drunk and barely can open our eyes and shit, and that nigga would just be singing. And that would just sound like you got, muhfucking, BB King or somebody in here.

ISM: Classic.

Shallah Raekwon: Just, you know, singing Barry White or somebody up in here. That boy… That boy was a singer tho, you know what I mean? So who are we to say that after the rap we might start singing. You know what I mean?

ISM: Get the whole routine down like The Temptations.

Shallah Raekwon: Shit like that… Word.

ISM: Word. I was wondering your take on what kinda lasting effect the drug trade in the 80’s left on the city of New York?

Shallah Raekwon: It left a lot. You know what I mean? It was a form of survival. You know what I mean? It was our way of saying, okay, we can’t find a job, this is what we gon’ do. And we did a lot of things based on just trying to have, and just trying to make it and not be in a situation where we asking somebody for something, or… You know what I mean? We robbing somebody before we go out there and we earn ours. and at that time, it was like, all that was just great energy for us while we was growing up, because it taught us a sense of responsibility. You know? We was grown men at a young age. So… You know? That’s important though. And we use what we know to get us where we at today, and you know, now it’s all about this right now. You know what I mean? Of course a lot of times you hear people say, “The rap game is like the crack game.” But… more importantly, you know the principals of everything is the same, but this is totally different. You know what I mean? This is legitimized. This is legal. This is a smart way of doing things. You know… This is artistry right here. Nah’mean? It’s totally different right now. You know what I mean? It’s not like back then when we just worried about the dollar right then and there, you know, running out of the cars, and doing all of that dumb shit. You know what i mean? When you get the opportunity to switch your life, and switch it in a better way where it makes sense… Then it’s live. You know what i mean? It shows that dreams can come true.

ISM: That brings me to my next question.. I wanted to know how did you evolve your mentality from a 5% ideology into being a muslim?

Shallah Raekwon: It’s hard work, you know what I mean? But I apply the best. And I know that the most high is watching me. He’s given me the opportunity to do the things that I wanna do. You know what I mean? All it is is respecting your maker and knowing that he gave you the opportunity to do the things that you wanna do. You know just stepping from out of the 5% nation into becoming a muslim is like.. It’s a big step, but I’m still learning every day. you know what I mean?

ISM: it’s a blessing to learn every day.

Shallah Raekwon: I gotta keep learning, and I gotta count my blessings. You know having somebody that I know that I fully believe in and I fully feel is responsible for my life is a great thing. I think that everybody should have some kind of spirituality that they have in them because these are the last days, so it’s very important. You know what I mean? Very important.

ISM: Do legends in the rap game have a responsibility to speak for their people like Malcolm or Martin would?

Shallah Reakwon: Umm… I think so. You know what I mean? I think that we are a product of our environment, but more importantly, yeah. A voice is a voice. I think that when it comes to certain topics in the game, you should go to somebody who has been around for a minute and who is still doing it. There’s still a lot of us around. You think about The Lox. You know what I mean? The Lox been here for a minute. they were busting their gun. You know what I mean? You know Jay, of course. Dr. Dre. You know, you still got dudes around. So it’s important that when they speak, or when we speak, it’s something you take heed to. Especially if you are a new artist coming up in the game. I think that you should listen to your older brothers and at least learn from their experiences. It ain’t the fact that you gotta listen to everything that we say, but it’s always good to have that. We the Wilt Chamberlains now. We them dudes in the game, but we still bounce the ball heavy. You know what I mean? I look at myself as a Shaq, you know what I mean?

ISM: Shattering backboards.

Shallah Raekwon: Shaq. you know what I mean? Shaq’s still that nigga… but Shaq do what he do. You know what I mean?

ISM: He’s kept growing with the game. Even though he ain’t playing, he’s still growing with the game.

Shallah Raekwon: Even though he ain’t playing, there ain’t nothing he don’t know about the game. so you know… I consider myself one of them type dudes.

ISM: What were some of the flyest garments to flood out your closets?

Shallah Raekwon: Ha ha ha… You trying to go there man.

[Laughs in the background]

Shallah Raekwon: You trying to go there real quick… You know… You know what I mean, you know? It depends, man. I remember wearing silks and slacks for like a year straight one year. You know what I mean? That was the fly shit man. Remember how niggaz used to come out on the block back then? I wouldn’t come out if the slacks ain’t ironed. I wouldn’t be on the block if this wasn’t ironed out. Creased out and everything. Bally sneakers on. All that. Silk shirts on a hot day. You cool as fuck, you know what I mean. Baby powder on. You know what I’m saying? Them was the days. It was automatic fly that day.

ISM: Why cuban links over herringbones?

Shallah Raekwon: You know… Herringbones is like them shits that will cut your fucking neck off. I’m scarred of them shits, cuz if a nigga gave me that… You know cuz they’re so thin. I never liked herringbones. You know what I mean? Cuz them shits is thin like… They’re like blades on your neck.

ISM: Yeah, cuban links are chunky.

Shallah Raekwon: Cuban links, you know what I mean, it’s like you know…

ISM: It just sound more official too, like a cuban cigar.

Shallah Raekwon: Yeah yeah… Cubans right? The cubans are like the big heavy, chk chk chk. They just sound like that. Like chk chk chk. Know what i’m saying?

ISM: So what should the people be checking for from you man? What do you got on the plate next?

Shallah Raekwon: More music. More flames. You know, I’m working with some artists I feel got a lot of talent. JD Era, he’s running around here somewhere, nah’mean… Promoting himself. Just really building this label up. That’s the main goal right now, to create that opportunity to give other artists the opportunity to be in the game.

ISM: Give back.

Shallah Raekwon: And givin’ them that get back that they need to make it in today’s music. That’s what we about man. Helping artists get on, you know? Check for us, Let us know what you doing. Send some shit out. You know we on twitter @raekwon.

ISM: I seen y’all on instagram.

Shallah Raekwon: Instagramming the hammers and all that good shit, ya nah’mean… we there though B. We there.

ISM: Last question… When all is said and done, how do you want the legacy of the Wu-Tang Clan remembered?

Shallah Raekwon: I want it to be remembered as a group that you really not gonna ever get a chance to be able to get again. It’s gonna be hard to get that. You know what I mean? Like somethings are made to come back again, but that’s hard, you know what I mean? For you to get that group, especially a brother like Ol’ Dirty Bastard, you know what I mean? Like… You only get one of them. It’s like asking to get back The Jacksons or something. Like how the fuck you gonna get The Jacksons back? You know what I’m saying? It’s over. You know what I mean? But you know… I think that we became good role models for other artists, and other groups… And… You’ll never get another Wu tho. You only get one of them. That’s like me sitting here saying we’re gonna get another Marvin Gaye, in today’s time. That’s not happening.

ISM: Right.

Shallah Raekwon: That’s not happening… Not happening

ISM: It can only be done once.

Shallah Raekwon: No doubt.

ISM: You can’t duplicate it, can’t clone it.

Shallah Reakwon: You can’t. All you can do is respect it. Nah’mean?

ISM: Word up.

Shallah Reakwon: No doubt.


And no doubt Raekwon is gonna keep cheffing up those classic raps the god has been known to kick. Check out the Lost Jewlry EP and keep your Cazals peeled for some I.nternational L.uxurious A.rt.

You heard it here first, you know ya man’s @DropJewelz.
Photos taken by Cali Grindz

© 2011 ILLSOCIETY Media Group LLC. All rights reserved.