Wu-Tang Clan Members Revisit ‘Enter The Wu-Tang: 36 Chambers’
In The Booth
“Bring Da Ruckus”
Deck: I heard [RZA] making a beat and this dude is so ill that he does shit, like, you’ll hear one sound on the beat and never hear it again. You’ll hear it in the middle of the record. On “Bring Da Ruckus” at the end when all the beats drop, there’s this obnoxious horn in there but it’s not obnoxious when you’re caught in the moment. When I was sitting there listening to him, I hear [Imitates the horn] and he’s doing that. I’m like, “Why are you doing that? You’re fucking up the beat.” He’s like, “Nah. I’m giving it a bridge or something like that. I’m giving it a breakdown, a lead to the end where it’s like [Sings end of song] ‘So Bring It On.'” He changed the whole beat from what we were rapping on, but you only got that at the end.
He does that from time to time. You hear one sound, two sounds. He might take a paint bucket, turns it upside down and puts the mic under the paint bucket and bangs on it with a stick. That’s the snare from “Bring Da Ruckus.” That “Boom! Kow! Boom! Boom! Kow!” Who thinks of that? Who really thinks of that? He was doing shit like putting water in the glass, banging it with his finger and getting new sounds on the mic. It’s one of the reasons that he doesn’t really like to sample nowadays either because, “Back in the days, I had to dig for those sounds and I had to manipulate and rearrange something from nothing.” Now they sell all that in a flash drive. You can go in the store and buy a Casio keyboard and insert a CD or flash drive and all that shit is prearranged. It takes away from the excitement of him having to actually… Me and him sitting in their record by record just… “How does that sound?” “Oh, that’s dope.” Put the record to the side.
Ghost: I just remember laying in bed thinking about that verse, writing it when I was laying down and shit. Elephant tusks and all that shit. I was laying down when it came to me: “Ghostface / Catch the blast of a hype verse / My glock burst…”
“Da Mystery Of Chessboxin'”
Ghost: I started really coming into myself on “Mystery of Chessboxing” and tryna keep up with that brothas that’s around me. I was last place, but I got Rookie of the Year. With 36 Chambers, I’m in last place. I didn’t really give a fuck that much about it but it was what it was. Cappadonna was supposed to be on there but Cap wasn’t home yet. Cap came home when we did Cuban Links. He would’ve been on it. Cap was the best. He was locked up during the time. “Mystery” was—it was the “Mystery Of Chessboxin’.” That’s all it was. I just had to make sure that I was okay. Like, okay, “You got Dirty on the track, you got that. Just get busy.” Just do something. “Mystery Of Chessboxin,’” it just happened, man. Write your shit to the beat and try to ride it a certain way, “Speaking of the devil/ Sike, that shit right.”
Masta Killa: I don’t remember exactly how that went. I remember [Killah Priest] was there. I don’t remember if he had already laid a verse on the beat; I know there was a few people who laid other verses. There were a few people who were there that had an opportunity (to jump on the song). I love Killah Priest, but I’m pretty sure he would have said something. He would have been more respected.
I actually went to GZA with those “Chessboxin” thoughts at that time on paper—I had written my thoughts down on paper and actually went to him one day and asked him, “What you think about this?” He read it and was like, “You wrote this? If you can learn how to say this, aw man.” He saw there was potential in that I respected him so much lyrically, and he is who he is to the Wu-Tang Clan, which is the head and the master of it all. So if he said there was potential there, then I knew I had something.
Deck: For fans who don’t know. Hip-hop historians and shit. Me and Rae had two verses a piece to the original “C.R.E.A.M.” I was trying to get RZA to put it out, to re-release it. He still has the original. The original has two verses from Raekwon and two verses from me. I took the first half of the first verse and the second half of the second verse and put them together. That’s where you get the “C.R.E.A.M” that the world knows now.
I still have the second half of the first verse and the first half of the second verse that I could put together and it could be a Part Two to “C.R.E.A.M.” I would like for the world to hear the original like you hear us young. We sound really young. We sound really hungry. I was like they need to hear that. I think that might inspire a lot of people. Just because the song is done don’t mean the song is done. Even if that’s what you get from it but RZA is like, “It doesn’t need to be that long. It’s a touching song. You hit it right on the nose.” We just brought Meth in to hit that hook. To this day, I didn’t think it would be that significant. That song is like one of the greatest songs that Wu-Tang has put out to the world.