From Kendrick Lamar winning a Pulitzer Price to infamous “pharma bro” Martin Shkreli going to prison to what being on the set of How High taught them, nothing was off limits for Method Man and Redman backstage at April’s Red Rocks show in Morrison, Colorado. The Wu-Tang Clan legend and hardcore Wu affiliate linked up as a duo in the mid-90s and released their first official collaborative album, Blackout!, in 1999. Since then, Meth and Red have been thick as thieves and the two hip-hop luminaries are still going strong—individually and as a duo. As Meth inches closer to dropping Meth Lab 2, Red is prepping Muddy Waters Too. Together, their energy is explosive. — Kyle Eustice
You both have this amazing charisma and I think that’s part of what it takes to really captivate a crowd, which you did tonight.
Redman: We built our brand to be like the top-five best performers in the hip-hop game. And when we got dudes like Busta Rhymes, A Tribe Called Quest, De La Soul and new dudes that’s putting—you know, when we got dudes like that watching us and when we set that kind of tone, and that bar, we have to stay on our job. And we learn from the best.
Who’d you learn from?
Redman: We learned form KRS-One.
Method Man: Run-D.M.C.
Redman: Run-D.M.C. Fucking Whodini. Fucking EPMD. Those guys.
When Martin Shkreli, who bought the sole copy of Wu-Tang’s Once Upon A Time In Shaolin for two-million dollars, got his sentence, how did you feel about that?
Method Man: I felt very bad for him because I don’t wish jail on nobody. Basically, people hated him for something that drug companies have been doing for years. He was just more blatant with it and more out there.
He waved it out in front of everyboy.
Method Man: Exactly. Now, if you can say in the same breath that you like Donald Trump because he’s just raw and he says what’s on his mind and he doesn’t hide anything and things of that nature or whatever the fuck they say about him, then why not this dude? But, he wanted to play a villain. He trolled as a villain. I think he was playing a character and it came back to bite him in his ass. He is far from a tough guy, but you can tell he’s very, very smart and calculative.
Redman: Is that a word?
No, but you just invented it.
Method Man: Calculative. Calculating. Sorry,
I like it. That’s good. Red, how did you celebrate your recent birthday?
Redman: I was in the house. I had a stomach ache from a flight. We had just got in from France. And turbulence, plane went down. You know how the plane about to land and then it gotta take back off again? Fucked me up in that bitch!
Method Man: I got him this fucking birthday gift. Shit is banging.
Method Man: You gonna love this shit; trust me.
So we’re gonna know about it one of these days?
Method Man: I don’t know. If he posts it, that’s it.
Redman: But we don’t do shit like that.
I won’t be checking your socials, I guess.
Redman: No, but you can ask me next time.
I met you, Meth, in 1999 and you were so cool to me.
Method Man: Yeah, we those type of guys.
Yeah, we definitely those type of guys.
Chuck D told me, “Treat the janitor, the secretary and the CEO the same way.”
Redman: Don’t we say the same shit? We say the same shit.
Method Man: Our term is, andyou can use this, at the end of the game, the pawn and king go in the same box. Okay? That’s it right there.
Redman: A lot of people, it’s hard to relate that differentiation. Is that a word?
Method Man: It’s hard for people to differentiate.
Differentiate. So close.
Redman: This game can turn you around if you not careful.
Method Man: Yes, it can.
Redman: And just like my boy was nice to you in the beginning, in the days when you was young and he’s still the same way. It’s easy to carry it if you’re a good person, for a lot of people.
Method Man: If the person is genuine.
Redman: And for a lot of people, it’s not. What you give out is what you get back.
Method Man: See, that’s why I value artists like Kendrick Lamar. I know it’s kind of cliché to say it now, but I wanna give him his roses now while he can still smell ’em. That “Be Humble” song—
I could have said it a million fucking times and I have—but just because he said it, now everybody wants to be humble.
Method Man: That’s an artist being a true artist, knowing that his voice carries, and spreading a message that he knows that a lot of people are gonna follow and that shit is dope. That’s using your platform the right way. You know what I mean? So, he deserved that Pulitzer Prize.
Redman: He definitely deserved it.
And for a hip-hop record no less.
Method Man: When you’re thinking on a level like that—people who think like that are people like Bobby Fischer. You know what I’m saying? People like RZA. You know what I mean? Einstein. These are motherfuckers that think so far outside the fucking box, the box doesn’t even exist any-fucking-more, you understand?
They can’t even see the edges. Where do you think you learned how to treat people so well?
Redman: I kind of learned my culture of being nice to people on the set of How High. When you have the whole staff happy. Like on our movie, everyone was happy to come in every fucking day. On some real shit.
Method Man: The grips, everybody.
Redman: The grips, the people who sweep the floor, they were happy to come to work every day.
Method Man: We were playing football with the wardrobe dude.
Redman: That’s what I learned. That’s what I fucking learned. That’s why, ’cause I’m a nice guy anyway to people, but that’s what I fucking learned to really pass on that energy because once you’re an asshole, that shit spreads.
Method Man: I’m glad you made that point. I have The Meth Lab Season 2 album coming out. This is an executive producer right here. That should be out this summer or we might get that back-to-school.
Redman: I’m working on Muddy Waters Too. The album is coming out at the end of theyear, hopefully. I’m dropping songs, though. We working. We all working. Method’s on the album. I’m on his album.
Method Man: As long as we have people that still believe in us, there’s no way that we’ll ever be out the loop or hungry or—
Method Man: Or irrelevant. There you go.
Well, this was one of the best nights ever. I got you guys on whatever you need in the future.
Redman: That’s what we need ’cause we come from the days of shaking hands. So when we drop projects, just support us just like we support you.
Method Man: But I ain’t gonna lie, I like where hip-hop is going right now. The game is getting so elevated to a point where dudes are getting contracts with some of these big companies that overlooked us before.
Didn’t Run-D.M.C. start that with adidas?
Method Man: Yeah, but we never got that. I mean, we had a little shit here and there. But anybody gonna fuck with Red and Meth, trust me.
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