The Wu-Tang Clan is set to release only a single copy of their brand new double album, The Wu–Once Upon A Time In Shaolin later this year.
The 31 tracks were recorded in secret over the last six years with Wu Tang producer Cilvaringz under the tutelage of The RZA. It features special guest appearances by Bonnie Jo Mason, Redman, FC Barcelona soccer players and a unique tapestry of guest performers.
The music is available for purchase and ownership by one individual only. It is presented in a hand carved nickel-silver box designed by the British Moroccan artist Yahya.
But you won’t be able to purchase or even hear any of the music right away because the iconic hip-hop collective plans to first take the only copy of Once Upon A Time In Shaolin on a “tour” through museums, galleries and festivals with an entry price tag likely of $30-50 per person.
Visitors will be required to go through heavy security to ensure that recording devices aren’t smuggled in, and as an extra precaution, they’ll likely have to listen to the entire 128 minute album on headphones that the venue will provide. Cilvaringz tells Forbes, “One leak of this thing nullifies the entire concept.”
“We’re about to put out a piece of art like nobody else has done in the history of [modern] music.”
After the “tour,” the Clan will sell the album with a multi-million dollar price tag to the highest bidder in hopes that a major label, big company or even wealthy private buyer will shell out big bucks and release it the traditional way to the masses.
Why, you ask? According to Forbes, the Wu-Tang’s aim is to use “the album as a springboard for the reconsideration of music as art, hoping the approach will help restore it to a place alongside great visual works–and create a shift in the music business.”
“We’re about to sell an album like nobody else sold it before,” Robert “RZA” Diggs exclusively tells Forbes. “We’re about to put out a piece of art like nobody else has done in the history of [modern] music. We’re making a single-sale collector’s item. This is like somebody having the scepter of an Egyptian king.”
The album encapsulates the Clan’s legendary dark funk and avant garde sound and is produced in the original Wu Tang style of the 90s. This is the first high-profile album never to be commercially released to the public and the first of its kind in the history of music.
You can find out more by visiting, the album’s website.
Author: Buddy Iahn
Buddy Iahn founded The Music Universe when he decided to juxtapose his love of web design and music. As a lifelong drummer, he decided to take a hiatus from playing music to report it. The website began as a fun project in 2013 to one of the top independent news sites.