While there are record label logos that come to mind when you mention or discuss 90’s Hip-Hop, there is one specific logo that is simply iconic to me. A logo that has world wide recognition and has penetrated pop culture. Who and what logo am I talking about?
The Wu baby, the Wu.
Why is this logo so iconic? I don’t really know the answer as to why. But I know when I first started listening to the Staten Island Hip super group in the early 90’s. The Wu or the Wu-Tang Clan consists of the following 9 original members: The RZA, Method Man, Ol Dirty Bastard, Inspectah Deck, Raekwon, Ghostface Killah, The Genius, UGOD and Masta Killa.
I started listening to the Wu in the early 90’s right after Method Man’s album, Tical was released in 94. He was the first solo Wu member to release an album. I was instantly a fan and I went back and bought the first Wu group album, Enter the Wu-Tang and bought basically every solo album after that for years. Everything about the Wu during that time was dope to me. From the group’s dynamic and intricate lyrical styles to the vintage RZA production. I had never heard anything like it before. What was also super cool to me was the fact of how they incorporated various elements of classic shaw production Kung-Fu movies into their music, naming and samples for beats and skits. Many of the early Wu albums contained movie audio clips and skits from classic kung-fu movies.
Even the group name and individual group name members were borrowed from these classic Chinese cult films. I immediately had a connection with their music as it was edgy, raw, lyrical and just plain dope. I had some high school buddies at the time that were really super into the Wu as well. We drew the classic Wu logo everywhere, I think at one point, I even carved a Halloween pumpkin with the Wu symbol. I couldn’t get enough. I rocked Wu-Wear shirts and hats, I listened to and bought all their albums and talked about them all the time.
While the height of their popularity may have declined. Their logo has stood the test of time and so has their original releases. I believe the term for that is “Classic”. Many of the members of gone on to be successful in other ventures. The RZA has stared in and composed musical scores for Quentin Tarantino movies such as Kill Bill.
Method Man has acted in a number of films as well. Many of the members had gone on to release multiple albums and tour worldwide.
Wu-Tang is for the children!
As always, feel free to reach out to me if there are any 90s related Hip-Hop elements you would like me to cover.