Method Man Clarifies Once Upon A Time In Shaolin Confusion, Criticizes Hip-Hop Media (Video)
Method Man recently sat down with HuffPost Live to clear the air on the recent confusion regarding the Wu-Tang Clan’s Once Upon A Time In Shaolin album, and also to talk about his upcoming film with Adam Sandler, The Cobbler (March 13). Before getting into the music, they start by discussing the Thomas McCarthy-directed film and how Meth became a part of the project. They also talk about his early transition from rapping to acting, and how his “diva” behavior made him lose his role on “Oz” (4:00). This leads to them talking about “diva moments” within the Wu-Tang Clan, as well as the early dynamics of the group when Method Man was the first member to establish a solo career.
Around the 8:00 mark they begin to break down the Once Upon A Time In Shaolin confusion. As Heads probably know, Method Man had a previous interview with XXL where he was quoted as saying “fuck that album” when asked about the 88-year waiting period before the album can be sold commercially. Here, he explains that he was misinformed, and that the interviewer told him that no one would be able to hear the album for 88 years. He says that RZA did not keep him in the loop and that’s why he couldn’t provide any answers regarding the auctioning of the album. He also criticizes XXL for only using a small part of his 10-minute interview, which leads into a discussion on Hip-Hop media in general.
Meth goes on to criticize Hip-Hop media and magazines, saying they’re the “blood suckers of the culture” and that “Vibe should’ve got a bullet” during the 1990’s “East vs. West beef”, which they fueled (11:30). This ties back to his recent interview with XXL, and how his “fuck that album” quote became the headline despite their misleading question. Method Man then gets into the album, and gives his own perspective on the whole process of creating it, forming the idea to sell it as a single piece of art, and then the miscommunication that led to the confusion (14:00). He also “discredits” the album’s producer Cilvaringz for coming up with “gimmicky” ideas for Wu-Tang.
Next, they go back to the 1990’s “East Coast vs. West Coast beef”, and Method Man talks about living in California during that time period (16:00). This ties in to today’s violence, its impact on 2014’s A Better Tomorrow album, and its effect on news media. Meth talks about the Eric Garner case (20:00), reflecting on his own friend Ernest Sayon who was killed under similar circumstances, and talks about policing in general in Staten Island. He also talks about the human element behind these police brutality cases, discussing fear and saying “when there’s no communication you’re always going to get a bad outcome”.
Method Man goes on to discuss his own experiences with police, being illegally searched as a teenager, and being arrested as a celebrity by the same officer who killed his friend Ernest (25:00). The final ten minutes of the interview are on a more positive vibe, as Meth takes some questions from the fans and talks about his legacy with the Wu-Tang Clan, and the early days recording “All I Need” and the “Torture Skit“.
Watch the entire interview below: