After nearly a year of public discontent being expressed from Wu Tang members such as U-God and Raekwon, the RZA has decided to clarify his position in these disputes.
Often accused of keeping the fortunes of the Wu Tang empire to himself, the RZA dismisses these claims as lacking substance and merit.
Its like the family stuff is definitely getting out to the public, and the issues that got to be resolved, everybody got their own manager, everybody got their own lawyer, and they got these motherf**kers that are looking at me like a hamburger, RZA told AllHipHop.com. And so for the people on the outside looking in, they looking at what RZAs doing, hes on that, hes on this, he must be robbing yall or something. I dont make money off of the Wu-Tang Clan. The money Ive been making, I had to clear a whole new career for myself I was telling Rae one day, Yo n***a, I never got a Wu-Tang royalty check in my life. I never got a royalty check for record sales in my life. Thats why Im letting brothers know that Im not getting paid off the hard work we did together.
RZA is also in the midst of being sued for $170,000 by U-God, who claims the de-facto Wu Tang leader owes him back money from previous work.
They sayin U-God suing the RZA for a $170,000. You know what? I could never owe you $170,000, RZA states incredulously. But even if I did owe you [that], U-God, after all these years of millions you made, motherf**ka, you gonna come back and b***h about a $170,000? Im the one who gave you, when nobody would sign U-God, I gave him a million dollar f**king deal! And of that million dollars, I put seven hundred thousand thats in his pocket. And the rest went to making the record [U-Gods debut, Golden Arms Redemption], and I still spent hundreds of thousands on videos for Thats Gangsta and The Bizarre, and all that.
The Abbott goes on to explain a similar situation with Cappadonna, who made headlines in 2001 for opting to work as a taxicab driver, rather than continue recording with the Clan.
Cappadonna claimed the steady income from the taxi position was more financial compensation than what he was getting from the group.
Same thing with Cappadonna, he couldnt secure a deal. RZA said. Ill give him a deal with Razor Sharp. Put a record out, put out a gold album, n***a. If he listened to his manager, who was Mike Caruso at the time, he would have f**ked around, tried to go to Sony, sign to Sony without me. Put out a record out and sell 1000 units. Alright then.
In the end, the RZA feels a lack of understanding on the financial side of the music business is the source of the infighting.
Nobody is doing something wrong, this industry has been like this since the 60s, homey, RZA stated. Its very rare that a black artist even makes it 10 years in this business. Its very rare that Hip-Hop artists make it this far. We was getting top dollar compared to what some of these n***as was getting. You can write that off, its not coming back. If I give you a million and you only get a dime a record after deduction and everything, all that s**t, from that dollar, you sell 50,000 you gonna owe me. Thats the system. Thats how it is.
RZAs new album Digi Snacks under the alter-ego Bobby Digital was released last week on Koch Records.
To read a more detailed feature with The RZA visit www.urbandaily.com.