Q&A: Raekwon Recovers Some Lost Jewelry

Categories: Raekwon, Wu-Tang

Smoking one for all the lost jewelry out there... We miss you dearly.
Raekwon is the mayor of fly shit. Snow Beach pullovers to Cuban links, his oft-imitated style and slang have been referenced for the past 20 years -- as Cappadonna once put it, "Half the East Coast sound just like Rae"). In the past, he's accused Frank White of biting his visual style. Today, if he gave a damn, he could accuse Frank Ocean, who was spotted a little while back sporting the quintessential Polo Ralph Lauren piece, the Snow Beach pullover, of the same. Rae's reach is obvious.

Over the course of his career he's kept what he calls a "jewelry box" of unreleased musical gems he's amassed. He's decided to drop that collection out of the sky as Lost Jewelry. As he put it, " it's an appetizer" for the start of the new year and as a prelude to an album he says he's releasing sooner than later in this year of The Gods, 2013. Let's just enjoy the appetizer the Chef has just presented and chat him up about the ingredients, what it took to make the dish, and of course, jewelry.

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Why'd you name the EP, Lost Jewelry?
These are pieces, large golden bracelets and all types of gems that I had in the stash. Out of all my rhymes, I always put a few aside until I had what I call my little jewelry box. It's a lot of things people have never heard and I wanted to give for free as an appreciation to my fans.

So it's like a Nas Lost Tapes type of situation?
Yeah, you could say that, but I also fixed a couple things. I added verses to add continuity and put it in context so it wouldn't sound age. It's timeless now. This is like the appetizer for the beginning of the year to show where my creativity is at. Some one is always rhyming over somebody else's shit and that's cool. But I want to give original work just for fun, but most importantly for the fans to enjoy, so it's for free too. It's something to hold people over until F.I.L.A.

What the fuck is F.I.L.A.?
Fly International Luxurious Art. It's the name of my new upcoming album. The whole F.I.L.A. situation was inspired by Fila clothes back in the day. Not just the sneakers but the gear and Fila suits for certain. Fila was supported heavy back in the day. I was all about that casual fly shit. We talking to [Fila] about it so maybe they'll see this Village Voice joint and they might be more excited and [do the deal].

Have you ever lost some jewelry?
I lost so many pieces, fam. For real. Who ever found my shits it was a great day for them because they were all authentic. I wasn't into no fake shit. I lost a couple joints just moving around. I've had shit that got stole from me by my friends and that shit fucked up friendships. I've lost a handful of rings.

What does the jewelry you wear signify?
A lot time I look at it like jewels are just signs of your hard work.

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