That’s My Jam: Wu-Tang Clan – Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)

Enter The Wu-Tang

Released November 9, 1993

Track Listing:

  1. Bring Da Ruckus
  2. Shame On A Nigga
  3. Clan In Da Front
  4. Wu-Tang: 7th Chamber
  5. Can It Be All So Simple
  6. Da Mystery of Chessboxin’
  7. Wu-Tang Clan Ain’t Nuthing ta Fuck Wit
  8. C.R.E.A.M.
  9. Method Man
  10. Protect Ya Neck
  11. Tearz
  12. Wu-Tang: 7th Chamber – Part II
  13. Method Man (Skunk Remix)

If we were talking about favorite hip-hop acts, I put the Wu-Tang Clan in my number one slot. 36 Chambers is exhibit A. RZA’s production with classic Kung-Fu film samples and the grimy, dark, yet eclectic sounds combined with nine distinct and unique rhyme styles and personalities creates one of the most important and pivotal albums in hip-hop history.

There are straight up hardcore street songs like Bring Da Ruckus and Protect Ya Neck, but there are also deeply personal records of struggle on C.R.E.A.M. and Can It Be All So Simple. Don’t need to go any further than Method Man for a not-too-serious, good time kind of song.

36 Chambers, and the Wu changed my life. I ended up learning more than I expected to when I first discovered the album. The Wu exposed me to what it meant to be a part of the Five-Percent Nation, and that revealed to me another level to the album. 36 Chambers spawned two books, both of which presented thoughts and ideas I still apply to this day.

The Wu-Tang Clan movement is a monolith. The sheer amount of influence in not only hip-hop but in other mediums and fields is awe-inspiring. From movies, comic books, television, academia, and everything else that intersects with it, a lot of people owe a lot to the W. I certainly do.

I’ve been asked over the years why I love hip-hop. Along with other reasons, one of the biggest reasons why I devote so much of my life to the culture is that I found and cultivated a sense of identity and self-confidence. As a skinny, small, and shy Cambodian-American growing up, it was difficult for me to stand up for myself. Simply saying no took a lot of effort for me.

Hip-hop gave this small kid the confidence of a seven-foot tall person with a megaphone. While others may question it, I stand firm in my belief that hip-hop saved my life. Entering the 36 Chambers is core to my salvation. Everything I love and admire about hip-hop is embodied by the Wu-Tang Clan and this album.

About ToZ 121 Articles
TOZ is Selective Hearing’s resident Urban music aficionado. He also has a keen interest in K-Pop, sneakers, Star Trek and long walks on the beach.