|© The Wu-Tang Corp.- 2003-09-30
It's dark and Park Hill is hot. Well, more humid than hot. The air hangs with a heaviness that foreshadows an evening of rain (which never comes). Wu-Tang's Raekwon is amped, setting up shots with his directors The Lazarus Brothers for his first single, "My Hood," from his upcoming Universal debut, The Lex Diamond Story, due out in late December. His peoples, the video crew, publicist, journalists and photographers mill around. The featured singer and one of Rae's artists, Tiffany Villarreal on his imprint deal with Universal, Fire Water, is sitting pretty to the side. Rae is like the mayor of Park Hill Projects. Like the single says, this is his hood.
"[This song] is me having a conversation with my environment," Rae explains. "Like my environment is a person. I'm expressing and congratulating him on making me make it through my life, through the ups and downs, providing a shoulder to lean on. It's a letter to my hood. I love my hood."
And what can we expect from The Lex Diamond Story? "Expect fire," boasts The Chef. "Expect Rae at the top of his game lyrically. Fly shit. I'm a conscious lyricist. I manifest myself in various ways. It's 75% Cuban Linx and 25% the real Rae."