The Wu-Tang Clan has been eligible for the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame since 2017, but have yet been able to make an appearance on the ballot. As one of the founders of the group, RZA wants to change that.
"I think we should [get in], and I do care," RZA told Rolling Stone. "It may take some time to get in there. I think it's good for us and I think it's good for rock & roll, because hip-hop is a form of music that grabs from every genre, but definitely grabs from rock & roll."
In the interview, RZA went on to highlighted "Bring da Ruckus" from the group's 1993 debut album Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) as one of the Wu's tracks that dabbled in both hip-hop and rock. "I thought I was making hip-hop, but shit, it has a motherfuckin' rock and roll groove like a motherfucker," RZA explained while dissecting the song. "I don't know how the fuck I did that. I go back and listen to some of the Beatles progressions and some of [Led] Zeppelin's progressions and movements, like, okay, I was on some shit, though."
Since the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame started inducting hip hop artists in 2007, only six acts have been inducted. Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five was the first act inducted in 2007, followed by Run-DMC (2009), the Beastie Boys (2012), Public Enemy (2013), N.W.A (2016) and Tupac Shakur (2017).
RZA also touched on how hip hop, just like rock, embodies the "spirit" of the youth. "Rock and roll has a certain spirit; it was the spirit of the Sixties and Seventies youth. Hip-hop is the Eighties, Nineties, up to now, the youth," he explained. "It's called hip-hop, but it's in the same spirit of rock and roll at the end of the day. Lyrical, stories, music, unorthodox, dissonant sometimes, energetic, all the things that rock is and was, hip-hop embodies."
While Wu-Tang is waiting to see if they'll be included on the 2020 ballot, the group is gearing up for the debut of their "Of Mics and Men" documentary on Showtime. The four-part documentary directed by Sacha Jenkins will debut on the network on May 10 at 9 pm ET/PT. The film will examine the rise to fame of the Staten Island group and celebrate the 25th anniversary of their debut album, Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers).