EXCLUSIVE: Masta Killa Weighs In On Wu-Tang Clan's 88 Year Commercial Hold For "Once Upon A Time" LP


(AllHipHop News) There has been a lot of discussion this week about Wu-Tang Clan’s secret Once Upon A Time In Shaolin album. After news broke the one-of-a-kind art piece will not be available for commercial use for 88 years, Wu member Method Man stated the idea of waiting that long was “stupid.”

RZA, the album’s producer, explained the purpose for the move was to keep corporations from mass producing the music for profit. Meth later clarified he was not fully informed about the idea when he commented on the project, but he still reinforced that he was not on board with the premise.

[ALSO READ: Method Man Talks Issues With Wu-Tang Clan’s “Once Upon A Time” Album, Producer Cilvaringz, & XXL (VIDEO)]

AllHipHop.com spoke with another founding member of Wu-Tang about the controversial 88 year commercial hold for Once Upon A Time. Masta Killa expressed he understood what RZA was attempting to do by keeping this particular project limited.

Masta Killa tells AllHipHop:

I think the only way to establish value in something is for it to be exclusive. That’s the whole point that I gathered for that particular piece of art. Music is also art, but it’s been devalued because of how it’s looked at now in the industry.

Unless you’re positioned a certain way, you’re art’s value – for everything that you pour into to make what you make – is not the real value. The compensation artists now receive for their art is basically nothing.

So the only way to establish that value is to be exclusive with something. If I’m not going to be exclusive with it, then what’s going to make this piece of art any different than any other album that you can go buy?

No one could see why we signed as a group but not sign everybody [as solo artists]. We still had our individual freedom to make other deals, but people didn’t get that at the time. Sometimes you have to stand for something and let it grow to be what it will be, and then maybe people can gravitate to it better when they see the light of it.

The Brooklyn born emcee revealed he contributed verses for at least four songs on the album. He also explained how the project was put together.

I was sent four tracks. For each track, I was given a direction. “I need two 8s. On this one I need one 16. On this one I need four 4 bars. I need this done by a certain amount of time.” That’s how I got the instruction for that project. At that time, I didn’t know this was what it would become. That’s what was asked of me, so that’s what I did. I haven’t heard anything since that time.

Masta Killa is scheduled to perform today (March 13) at the B&E Invitational’s Boombotix Halftime Show in Les Arcs, France. To live stream the event visit inspiredmedia.tv.

[ALSO READ: EXCLUSIVE: Masta Killa Talks Upcoming Solo Project + Wu-Tang’s “A Better Tomorrow” & “Once Upon A Time In Shaolin” LPs]