Bjork Discusses Her “Magic” Lost Collaboration with Wu-Tang Clan
In a new interview with FACT, Björk revealed she once crossed musical paths with none other than New York’s own Wu-Tang Clan. RZA and Bjork collaborated around the 1997 release of Homogenic, when she initially sought out the hip-hop legend’s beatmaking skills; she ended up collaborating with Wu-Tang on a number of tracks:
I had done beats on my albums, but it takes me a long time to make them. And sometimes I get impatient and I want other people to do it, so I sit there and describe to them what I want them to do. So, I was in Spain, and Wu-Tang Clan were supposed to come to Spain. RZA was supposed to come. But then months passed. Then the album got finished and I delivered it. Then RZA was like, “I’m ready! Shall I come to Spain?”
Instead, I went to New York. We wrote a couple of songs together. And I just felt… sometimes when you do things and you don’t plan them it’s magic. And I really think what we made was magic. But I think because it wasn’t part of the whole Homogenic thing and it wasn’t part of what Wu-Tang were doing at the time, it was better as an idea, if that makes any sense?
Despite this, Wu-Tang Clan still kept in touch, and even flanked Björk as she made an in-store book signing appearance at New York’s Tower Records. “I turned up–and seven of the Wu-Tang Clan turned up to, like, protect me!” she recalled. “I was signing books for an hour, and they sent some of their team, standing there with me. That was one of my all-time favourite moments: I had been on my own, so when they turned up I felt very protected. It was magic.”
So, in short: a genre-spanning, Icelandic-flutes-meet-New-York-beats track titled “B.J.Ö.R.K.” never came to be, but the hip-hop collective still holds a place in Björk’s heart.
Further exploring her ties to New York rap, Björk also revealed she had written a section of a track for Jay-Z, but it didn’t pan out as she had planned. “Wasn’t meant to be,” she said of her work.