Wu-Tang’s Beatles Sample Claim Not Entirely Correct
After an announcement was posted on their MySpace page touting Wu-Tang Clan as the first act ever to legally clear a Beatles sample, some details have come to light that prove the claim to be somewhat misleading. According to MTV News, the Wu has been cleared to use a composition sample of the song “My Guitar Gently Weeps,” rather than a more common master sample. In essence, Wu has been authorized to use an interpolation of the famous Beatles tune, not an actual sample from the song as it appears on their 1968 self-titled LP. Nonetheless, the usage still had to be cleared by the estate of late Beatle George Harrison and the Wixen Music Publishing Company. MTV confirmed that George’s son, Dhani Harrison, does in fact play the guitar on a portion of the track, which is called “The Heart Gently Weeps,” along with John Frusciante of the Red Hot Chili Peppers. The song is scheduled to appear on the Wu’s new LP, 8 Diagrams, due out December 4. When MTV reached out to the Staten Island collective to ask why the claim of a “first ever Beatles sample” was made on their Myspace page, they received the following statement.
“The statement on Wu-Tang Clan’s MySpace site is incorrect and we apologize for any confusion it may have caused. We did not sample the Beatles, rather we did an interpolation of the classic George Harrison composition ‘While My Guitar Gently Weeps.’ In a historic collaboration, Dhani Harrison, son of George, through his friendship with the RZA, played guitar on the song and he himself helped secure the reuse license. Also appearing on the song are John Frusciante, guitar player for the Red Hot Chili Peppers, and Erykah Badu singing the chorus. To satisfy everyone’s curiosity, the song will be streamed exclusively on loud.com tonight. It will be the first single and video from the forthcoming album 8 Diagrams, in stores December 4.”