Danny Hastings - Wu-Tang Clan (Album Cover: 36 Chambers | 1993)

Danny Hastings - Wu-Tang Clan (Album Cover: 36 Chambers | 1993)

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- Chromogenic print - 1 of 50
- 16x20
- Hand signed

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The cover of the Wu-Tang Clan’s debut LP "Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)" is one of the most recognizable images in hip-hop. For many, it was the first visual introduction to one of the culture’s most influential groups. And... it almost didn’t happen.

“Two of them didn’t show up, and The RZA was about to cancel,” says Danny Hastings, the photographer assigned to shoot the cover for the group’s debut studio album. Thinking quickly on his feet, he recalled the first time he’d seen the Clan perform, at a showcase during the 1993 Jack The Rapper conference in Atlanta. Clad in hoodies and masks, they bum-rushed the stage during another group’s set, tossing the MCs and DJ aside as they chanted “Wu-Tang Clan Ain’t Nuthing ta F*ck Wit.” When the music dropped, Hastings says “the place went bananas.” At once slightly terrifying, a little disrespectful, and wholly electrifying, the performance embodied the Clan’s raw grit and lawlessness — the perfect note on which to introduce them to the world, visually.

Once he got the OK from The RZA, the Clan suited up, and in a moment, Hastings captured the unruly band of snot-nosed MCs in their most distilled form: rugged twenty-somethings ready to rewrite the rules of the game.