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About Raekwon

Corey Woods , is an American rapper, better known by his stage name Raekwon . He rose to prominence as a founding member of the hip-hop group Wu-Tang Clan, which achieved mainstream success following the release of their debut album, Enter the Wu-Tang , in 1993. Raekwon would subsequently pursue a solo career, releasing his first solo album, entitled Only Built 4 Cuban Linx..., in 1995. The album received critical acclaim, and is regarded by many critics as one of the greatest hip-hop albums of all time, as well as a staple of 1990s rap.

Whereas his next two albums, Immobilarity in 1999 and then The Lex Diamond Story in 2003, drew mixed reviews, his fourth album, long delayed, Only Built 4 Cuban Linx... Pt. II, released in September 2009, was likened to The Godfather 2. Recognized for his "street epics" that are "straightforward yet linguistically rich," Raewkon is ranked among leading rappers. Meanwhile, he founded the record label ICE H20 Records.

Raekwon was born Corey Woods in Brownsville, Brooklyn, where he was raised by his mother during his early childhood. His father was an addict. Raekwon only met his father once when he was six years old. On that occasion, his father brought him to meet his paternal grandmother and then snuck out of the apartment. Raekwon moved with his mother to Staten Island after his mother was robbed. They were living in Park Hill by the time Raekwon was adolescent.

Raekwon attributes the name Raekwon to the Five-Percent Nation, an offshoot of the Nation of Islam, when he was a "young kid." He converted to Islam in 2009.

Growing up, he witnessed his mother being hit and abused by different men, an experience which he said "affected a lot." As a young man, his mother kicked him out of their Park Hill home when Raekwon got into an argument with her boyfriend and his mother sided with the boyfriend. During this time, he spiraled into a pattern of hopelessness and violent behavior. He became addicted to cocaine and crack cocaine until he became aware of how the crack epidemic was affecting those around him, at which point "it was an automatic stop."

Raekwon and rap partner Ghostface Killah attended junior high school together on Staten Island. Raekwon attended New Dorp High School, where he befriended rappers Remedy, Method Man and Inspectah Deck.

This article uses material from the Wikipedia article "Raekwon", which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.

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