Today, Forbes has shared two videos relating to Wu-Tang Clan's one-of-a-kind The Wu: Once Upon A Time in Shaolin album. Journalist Zack O'Malley Greenburg traveled to Marrakesh, Morocco where he spoke with the album's producer, Tarik “Cilvaringz” Azzougarh, as well as the artist who designed and built the gorgeous packaging, Yahya. Watch an excerpt from the full video, focusing on a 51 second audio clip of the album above. Click here for the full 13+ minute clip of the journey and extended interviews, along with Greenburg's story at Forbes.com
First of all, it's difficult to judge the audio based on the video. We get to hear Ghostface Killa's verse, as well as some bizarre intro and outro stuff. Frankly, I don't think it sounds much like Wu-Tang Clan's best material from the "'93 to '97" period that Cilvaringz says they were working toward, but it's difficult to tell from this fairly crude audio recording of a fairly short snippet of music. There is a mysterious female singer, which we're led to believe might be Cher. Cher's management did not respond to a request for information from Forbes at the time of this publication.
The album is going on a tour through galleries and other exhibition spaces where tickets will sell for $30 - $50 to hear the two-hour recording on headphones. Cilvaringz told Forbes that interested parties range from world-renowned museums to major universities. No official dates have been set, thus far. At some point, presumably after the tour, the album will go up for auction. In an interview with Billboard, RZA has said that the group has been offered $5 million already.
At the time of the interviews, the album's packaging was being kept at the exotic Royal Mansour hotel, where nightly rates for rooms can range from $2,250 to $50,000. Look at some images of the "box within a box, within a box."