Seems rather steep when it'll just get ripped
Edward Keeble

09:52 3rd April 2014

According to Wu-Tang Clan's RZA, the hip hop group have had offers of up to $5 million coming in for their one-off album.

The LP, which the RZA claims has been made to restore music's status as 'art', was put up for auction earlier this month. Entitled Once Upon a Time In Shaolin, the album has been in development for over 20 years and will tour museums around the world before being offered to the highest bidder. 

"Offers came in at $2 million, somebody offered $5 million yesterday," the RZA told Billboard. "I've been getting a lot of emails: some from people I know, some from people I don’t know, and they’re also emailing other members of my organization."

 Listen to Wu-Tang's 'Da Mystery of Chessboxin' below

"So far, $5 million is the biggest number," he continued. "I don’t know how to measure it, but it gives us an idea that what we’re doing is being understood by some. And there are some good peers of mine also, who are very high-ranking in the film business and the music business, sending me a lot of good will. It’s been real positive."

The price tag in the millions does seem a little bit on the steep side and perhaps should be taken with a pinch of salt. Remember ripping CDs is now almost legal (whoah) and there is no doubt that as soon as the public attend a listening party clips will be all over the internet. 

 Below: 14 things in hip hop and R&B to look forward to in 2014

  • The return of Wu-Tang clan: Yep, Wu Tang are slated to finally be releasing their sixth album in 2014. A Better Tomorrow will be their first release in seven years, and there are high hopes for the record - producer RZA's recent experimentations with James Blake and even Interpol's Paul Banks could shift the material into a new and interesting place. RZA admitted in November that Raekwon is yet to lay down his verses, but hey, he's got 12 months before 2014 is out.

  • Hip hop takes over the Grammy awards: Jay Z and Kanye have previously boycotted the prestigious music ceremony for snubbing the hip hop genre, but rap has a strong showing in 2014's list of nominees, thanks to an excellent 2013. Jay Z leads the nominations with a massive 9 nods, whilst Kendrick Lamar's acclaimed debut good kid, m.a.a.d city is deservedly up for album of the year. Lamar is also nominated for best new artist, alongside 'Thrift Shop' hitmakers Macklemore & Ryan Lewis.

  • Female rap gets a big look: 2013 was a rather anticlimatic year in terms of the ladies of hip hop; Azealia Banks' much-hyped debut failed to materialise, and efforts from Iggy Azalea and Angel Haze were pushed back multiple times. Things are looking up, however, as Azalea has confirmed we'll be hearing her debut The New Classic, in March - whilst Haze's Dirty Gold has been pushed forward to December 30 of this year. It will certainly be interesting to hear if their studio premieres live up to the hype. As for Banks' Broke With Expensive Taste? It's still a mystery, but we wouldn't be surprised for the loudmouthed Harlem native to drop it unexpectedly, March to steal Azalea's thunder, of course.

  • Action Bronson's studio debut: Queens rapper Action Bronson, who somewhat resembles a redheaded, hood Father Christmas, has slowly but surely been making waves thanks to his excellent and ever entertaining mixtapes; packed with tongue in cheek, endlessly quotable lyricism, and effortlessly powerful, wheezing delivery. The swaggering 'Strictly 4 My Jeeps' was one of the tracks of the year, and the totally bizarre but brilliant cut-and-paste 'Blue Chips 2' mixtape was a joy. Now, Bronson is ready to step up to the big league, with his debut full length studio effort slated for a release in 2014. We're more than ready. [Photo: Terry Richardson]

  • Tyler, The Creator's movie: The Odd Future forerunner has made a foray into the world of directing recently; whether it's at the helm for his own, surreal videos 'Tamale/ and 'IFHY', or the colourful visuals for 'Glowing' [by an unconfirmed, mystery artist], it's clear the rapper has quite the imagination. So it's no surprise he'll reportedly be dropping a full length feature come 2014, named Wolf after his second album. A short, typically ambigous trailer for the film was released, which simply depicted Tyler smoking a cigarette whilst ordering a hit on a target - it should be interesting.

  • OutKast reunite: Fans have been hungry for the pioneering Atlanta duo to reunite since their last release, Idlewild, seven years ago. Now, it seems they've got their wish, as it's heavily rumoured the Andre 3000 and Big Boi will be performing together at US festival Coachella. These rumours seemed to be confirmed when an image of the pair hanging out was posted online. This really is truly exciting - we'd love to see what the famously ambitious duo would bring to the increasingly innovative hip hop game in 2014.

  • Frank Ocean's sophomore LP: Quietly and confidently, Odd Future ally Ocean stepped out behind outspoken Tyler, The Creator's shadow with his promising mixtape, Nostalgia Ultra, which showcased his beautiful vocals, eye for a sample, and potent lyricism. However, no one foresaw the impact Ocean's debut album, Channel Orange would have. Critically acclaimed the world over, Channel Orange is often cited as the best album of the 2012 by miles - and despite there only being 18 months since its release, it feels like 18 years. Therefore it was a relief when Ocean himself confirmed via his blog we can expect the follow up in summer 2014.

  • ...And Yeezus mark II: This year's Yeezus was an inaccessible but ultimately uncompromising and powerful offering, now heralded as one of the best albums of the year. And it seems Yeezy is keen to continue to ride this neverending creative streak - he's revealed he's started work on his next album. The outspoken rapper is aiming for his seventh record to be released summer 2014. We wonder which direction he'll go in for this one?

  • Will the Yeezus tour hit the UK?: Sure, Kanye's North American shows have been marred by cancelled shows, damaged stage equipment and poor turnouts, but we're DYING to see Kanye having a chinwag with Jesus for ourselves, as well as the stunningly epic stage set up. Not to mention Yeezus is Kanye's most immersive, atmospheric album yet - it'd be interesting to see how it pans out live. Come on Kanye, give us some UK dates.

  • A$AP Mob's album: 2013 has seen debuts from two of New York collective A$AP Mob's brighest stars, A$AP Rocky and Ferg [if you will]. The pair permeated hip hop's landscape in 2013 with their trippy, trappy breed of dark, electronic tinged hip hop. Now, the whole crew are due to drop a collaborative debut studio album, titled L.O.R.D, in 2014 - March 4 to be exact, according to member A$AP Yams. 2012's mixtape Lords Never Worry was a promising introduction - especially the menacing, churning 'Thuggin' Noise'. Now let's see whether the other members can step up the plate.

  • Kelis goes low-key: One of the most unique and experimental R&B artists out there, Kelis has always fascinated since her Neptunes-produced masterpiece Kaleidoscope. However, 'Milkshake' aside, she's failed to reach those heights since, with her last album, the muddling Flesh Tone missing the mark (for some). But now it seems Kelis is taking another route, signing with respected UK indie label Ninja Tune, which boasts the likes of Machinedrum and Bonobo on its roster. Dave Sitek will be on production duties for album Food, due out April 28 2014, and with Ninja Tune promising a "transcendent, Spector-esque lift, warm bottom ends and vast depth" we have high hopes for this one.

  • The release of Dr Dre's detox?: File this one under 'HIGHLY tentative.' The legendary producer's so-called final album has been in the works since 2001, so we're not holding out too much hope it'll finally get an airing - but there are strong rumours 2014 could be the year. Oddly, two singles have already been released in 2010, including the hit 'I Need A Doctor', so where's the rest of the album, Dre? Some say it's never coming out, some say it's hip hop's best kept secret - we'll just have to wait and see.

  • Danny Brown takes over the UK: Detroit rapper Brown's excellent third album Old has deservedly been named as one of the best albums of 2013 by every publication worth reading out there, so we're stoked he's heading to the UK and Europe in spring 2014 with his high-octane show. Get ready to stick out your tongue and prepare your best horns hands.

  • Pharrell's solo comeback: 2013 saw Pharrell return to the spotlight in a big way, lending his trademark falsetto vocals to two of the biggest songs of the year - 'Get Lucky' and 'Blurred Lines', as well as producing tracks for Pusha T, Earl Sweatshirt and Mac Miller. Now, Williams is set to debut a new album of solo material in 2013, recently signing a deal with Columbia. If it's anything like his irresistibly cheerful No.1 single 'Happy', which has recently topped the charts, we're in for a treat.

Photo: Press