Over the weekend, a part of New York’s Staten Island borough became one of the 36 Chambers.
In other words, the borough natives the Wu-Tang Clan officially stamped its name on the intersection of Vanderbilt Avenue and Targee Street to become the Wu-Tang Clan District, named for the rap collective that made its mark on hip hop culture with its groundbreaking 1993 album Enter the Wu Tang (36 Chambers).
On hand for the unveiling were a few of its members Ghost Face Killah, Raekwon the Chef and Inspectah Deck. Their loyal clan named the “Killer Bees” swarmed in and chanted “Wu Tang!” as the big reveal happened, according to HipHopWired.com.
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“It’s like a dream right now,” Ghostface said at the ceremony. “Twenty-five years later to come back and to have district, a block named after your crew, it’s like, yo, it’s unbelievable. First of all, people don’t get to make it 25 years later. But coming from Staten Island, I wanna tell y’all anything is possible. I never saw this day coming. I knew that we were some ill MCs, but I didn’t know it would take it this far.”
It was a long time coming thanks to local culture advocate LeRoy McCarthy who spearheaded the street co-naming efforts.
Last year, the New York City Council voted to honor three music legends in their home borough with streets named in them: the Notorious B.I.G. (a.k.a. Christopher Wallace), the Wu-Tang Clan and Woody Guthrie.
McCarthy previously told hyperlocal news website Gothamist: “I’m happy that NYC officials are finally giving the city’s indigenous ‘Hip Hop‘ music the respect and recognition that it deserves. It took a long time and lots of hard-work to advance the Christopher Wallace Way & Wu-Tang Clan District street co-naming, but ya know what, Hip Hop Don’t Stop.”
His next push will be to get streets named in Manhattan for the Beastie Boys and in the Bronx in memory Big Pun, who died in 2000.