GZA: "hip-hop started (initially) to stop violence."
GZA understands the paradigm shift we are undergoing, and the weight it carries on our musical choices as artists. The founder member Wu-Tang sat down with the Miami New Times for an exclusive interview where the discussed the evolutionary path of hip hop. What differentiates GZA's account of current day, from say.. the words of Rakim or some other Generation Xer, is an understanding of material consequences.
When asked if he thought we were living through a golden age for rap, GZA laughed in the face of his correspondent, well not exactly, it was phone interview, and the person who asked was merely probing for a sensational response. Once GZA regained his composure he said, “Nowhere near, it’s not even the silver or the bronze age (right now)."
GZA has noticed an infinite regression in lyricism. He broke it down like this: "I’m not knocking producers or the artists nowadays. Some of the stuff sounds good and some doesn’t, but it’s just my opinion. But I think, lyrically, there’s been a regression."
The legendary chessboxer reserved his greatest concern for the violent state of alarm in the hip hop community. The interviewer cited the deaths of Jimmy Wopo and XXXTentacion as examples of this perceived state of unrest, to which GZA issued a warning in the form of an analogy."Hopefully, it’ll (violence) cease to exist at some point," GZA agreed. "Of course it has the potential to escalate, it’s a fire. And what happens with fires? Either you put them out or they spread."