Purchase “The Keynote Speaker” on iTunes: http://bit.ly/1Gk7DZE
Babygrande is proud to announce the re-signing of U-God of the seminal hip-hop supergroup, the Wu-Tang Clan.
While U-God is currently hard at work on his yet to be announced fifth solo album, he will first re-release his 2014 solo outing, The Keynote Speaker. The album which includes guest appearances from Wu-Tang members GZA, Method Man and Inspectah Deck as well as verses from Styles P, Elzhi and Kool Keith, is executive produced by RZA who also produced on the album. The physical version of The Keynote Speaker includes a newly illustrated fold-out of the album’s cover, a futuristic boom box inspired by U-God and Wu-Tang terminology and slang. A full-size poster of the new album artwork is also available for purchase.
The video for “Heads Up” features fellow Wu-Tang member GZA as well as Jackpot Scotty Wotty. “Heads Up” showcases each distinct lyricist and director Don Tyler captures the tone of the track with this black and white visual, shot in New York.
“Keynote Speaker is such a special album. My team has worked closely with Babygrande to give the album a fresh look and to continue to promote it around the world. ‘Heads Up’ is a classic Wu-Tang style video that brings everything back to the essence,” U-God told Allhiphop.com
Brownsville, Brooklyn native U-God moved to Staten Island as a youth. Growing up on the Island in Park Hill not far from his cousin Method Man, Inspectah Deck and Raekwon were his childhood friends. He later became good friends with Cappadonna, then RZA and Ghostface, and he began rhyming under the alias Golden Arms, based on the Kung-Fu movie The Kid with The Golden Arms. U-God quickly became known to fans for his rugged flow and bass-like voice on Wu tracks “Protect Ya Neck,” “Da Mystery of Chessboxin”, “Winter Warz”, “Knuckleheadz”, “Investigative Reports”, and “Black Jesus”. U-God was featured on 10 tracks from the group’s 4x platinum sophomore album Wu-Tang Forever, two of which were the hit singles “It’s Yourz” and “Triumph.” Around this time, his young son was accidentally shot and injured, an ordeal the rapper documented on the Wu-Tang Clan track “A Better Tomorrow.” On the Clan’s third effort, The W, U-God was featured on hit single “Gravel Pit.” The track would become a worldwide hit and the highest charting Wu-Tang song in the group’s twenty year history.
U-God’s solo career got off to a late start, becoming the eighth member of the group to record a solo album, releasing Golden Arms Redemption in 1999 on Priority Records, which displayed a wide variety of sounds from gritty Blaxploitation funk to urgent string sections, and featured guest appearances from several Wu-Tang members and affiliates. The song “Rumble” was used as the main song for the video game “Wu Tang : Shaolin Style.” “Bizarre,” a single from the album, debuted #7 on the Billboard Hot Rap Singles, propelling the album to Gold status, in spite of Priority Records being on the verge of shutting down. It would be a long time since we heard from him as a solo artist but he remained very active recording verses on over 200 songs like SWV hit rmx for “Anything” from the “Above The Rim” soundtrack, the verse and hook on Ghostface’s hit single “Cherchez Le Ghost” and recently featured on the track “Rivers Of Blood” from RZA’s Man with the Iron Fists movie soundtrack which was featured on Nike commercial with soccer superstar Neymar Jr.
In 2009 U-God released the album Dopium, his first album with Babygrande, the lead single “Wu-Tang” featured Method Man. The album featured guest appearances by Sheek Louch, Jim Jones, Raekwon, Ghostface Killah, GZA, Cappadonna, Method Man, Killah Priest and Scotty Wotty with production by Bloody Beetroots, Felix Cartel and Large Professor.
Babygrande Records, the fourteen year old pioneering indie label, spent most of 2014 in a constant phase of creative redevelopment, re-launched, and is now in the process of signing many new artists across multiple genres. While keeping its roots in hip-hop at heart along with its passion of growing and developing artists, Babygrande is now equally focused on other genres such as indie rock, pop, electronic and more.
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