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|Birth name||Tarik Azzougarh|
January 29, 1979 |
|Occupation(s)||Record producer, rapper|
|Associated acts||Wu-Tang Clan|
Tarik Azzougarh, better known as Cilvaringz, is a rapper, executive manager and hip hop producer associated with the Wu-Tang Clan. He was discovered by Ol' Dirty Bastard and Method Man at a Wu-Tang Clan concert in Amsterdam, the Netherlands on May 26, 1997. After impressing Ol' Dirty Bastard with a live freestyle on stage he was introduced to RZA who signed him to Wu-Tang Records in 1999.
Cilvaringz became the first official non American affiliate of the Wu-Tang Clan which at the time was unheard of and lead to mass coverage in most of Europe's major media outlets. From 2002 till 2006 he toured the world as the official opening act of RZA, Method Man & Redman, Raekwon and Ghostface Killah. On April 9, 2007 he released his first solo album I through five different record labels around the world. Since 2008, he has been working under the patronage of RZA on Wu-Tang's secret album Once Upon a Time in Shaolin. The unique release of the album as only one available copy in the world was unprecedented and became one of the biggest and most widely covered music stories of 2014. Forbes magazine broke the story exclusively on March 26, 2014.
- 1 Early life
- 2 Discovery by Wu-Tang Clan
- 3 RPEG Ltd
- 4 Film
- 5 Arap
- 6 Personal
- 7 Snowballs
- 8 Discography
- 9 Touring
- 10 References
- 11 External links
Cilvaringz grew up in the city of Tilburg in the Netherlands. He was an avid basketball player and a fan of hip-hop music citing MC Hammer and Vanilla Ice as his early Hip Hop inspirations. In 1992 he started experimenting with writing lyrics and recording demos. After hearing Wu-Tang Clan's debut album Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) he made it his "goal in life to either become a basketball player in the NBA or a member of the Wu-Tang Clan".
Discovery by Wu-Tang Clan
On May 26, 1997 the Wu-Tang Clan were performing a sold out concert at the Melkweg in Amsterdam as part of their Wu-Tang Forever promo tour. At the end of the show Ol' Dirty Bastard and Method Man announced a freestyle session for local acts to showcase their skills before the Clan. Cilvaringz rushed to the stage but could not reach it due to the excitement of many fans. Ol' Dirty Bastard spotted Cilvaringz struggling from the side and pulled him up on stage and gave him his microphone. He began freestyling, capturing the attention of the entire group and crowd. Just as Method Man pulled him over to meet RZA who was watching from the side of the stage, a fight broke out between Ol' Dirty Bastard and a group of fans who's girlfriends were flirting with Ol' Dirty Bastard on stage. Security cleared the venue and Cilvaringz lost contact with RZA. According to Cilvaringz, RZA had told him that he was interested in signing him to Wu-Tang Clan's extended group the Wu-Tang Killa Beez.
Wu-Tang Records signing
For two years Cilvaringz traveled back and forth to New York in the hope of finding RZA. In February 1999, he meets Sophia Diggs and Linda Hamlin, RZA's sister and mother in front of the Razor Sharp Records offices in Manhattan. Having heard of his story, they phone RZA to come by the office. An hour later RZA arrives and listens to Cilvaringz's demo. Seeing the enthusiasm of his employees, as well as Ghostface Killah's positive feedback over the phone from prison, RZA signs Cilvaringz to Wu-Tang Records, making his affiliation official. Coincidentally, he began recording his debut album I on May 26, 1999, exactly two years after being discovered, at the Wu-Villa in Paris, France.
Since 2002 Cilvaringz has been running his entertainment company RPEG Ltd which managed the careers of Arab rappers Salah Edin, Eslam Jawaad, Ledr P aka Palestine, DJ Van and producer Focus..., the son of Chic bassist Bernard Edwards, the only producer signed to Dr. Dre's imprint Aftermath Entertainment. In managing their careers Cilvaringz's company collaborated with De La Soul, Damon Albarn, IAM, Sefyu, DJ Khalil, Mala Rodriguez and many others.
In 2007, RPEG Ltd served as the executive producer for Salah Edin's debut album Nederlands Grootste Nachtmerrie which became the most controversial album in the history of Dutch Hip hop and won the Best Album Award for 2007.
Later on that year, Jive/Epic France and RPEG Ltd collaborated on the production of French artist La Fouine's second album Aller-Retour. Producer Focus... produced the majority of the album which has since reached Gold status.
In 2008, RPEG Ltd and lawyer Margriet Koedooder sued Dutch politician Geert Wilders for wrongfully portraying the image of its artist Salah Edin in the controversial anti-Islam movie Fitna. The court ruled in favor of Salah Edin and he was awarded 10.000 euros in copyright infringement and defamation damages. It was the first time Geert Wilders had lost a lawsuit. The case was widely covered in international media.
From 2007 till 2009, Cilvaringz served as one of two Vice Presidents of the Arts in Marrakech (AiM) International Biennale, headed by Vanessa Branson, sister of Sir Richard Branson with André Azoulay, HRH King Mohamed VI's senior advisor residing as the honorary president.
In 2010, RPEG Ltd collaborated with Universal Music Spain on the recording of Mala Rodriguez's Grammy Award winning album Dirty Bailarina. Focus... produced and recorded the majority of the album. Dirty Bailarina won two Latin Grammy Awards for Best Urban Music Album and Best Urban Song.
In 2014, Cilvaringz and RZA announced the one copy only release of Once Upon a Time in Shaolin, a Wu-Tang Clan album that was recorded in secret over a period of six years. The announcement, exclusively made by Forbes magazine, made headlines in all prominent media outlets across the world. Cilvaringz developed the idea of the Renaissance approach to music as a commissioned commodity and received advice from RZA as well as from prominent art world figures.
Cilvaringz played a small role in the movie Shouf Shouf Habibi, one of the most successful Dutch comedy productions to date. He also appeared in the theme song of the movie.
The song Siasa by Salah Edin featuring Eslam Jawaad and Cilvaringz was used by film director Gavin Hood in the movie Rendition starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Meryl Streep and Reese Witherspoon. It was the first time an Arabic rap song was used in a Hollywood blockbuster. Originally, New Line Cinema wanted to use a song by Moroccan group Fnaire who were under RPEG Ltd management at the time, but after a fall out between the group and Cilvaringz, RPEG Ltd renegotiated the deal and licensed Edin's music instead.
Cilvaringz is a member and co-founder of the Arabic rap collective ARAP which consists of Eslam Jawaad, Shadia Mansour, Palestine aka Ledr P, The Narcicyst, DJ Van, DJ Lady S, DJ Lethal Skillz and producer Mohalim. ARAP is a collective of the most prominent Arabic Hip Hop artists in the world, based on an initiative started by Moroccan rapper Salah Edin who later left the group.
He is a practicing Muslim but does not follow any particular ideology within Islam.
- The Mental Chamberz (Official internet release, 2001)
- The 3rd Chamber (Unofficial internet leak, 2002)
- I (Wu-Tang Records / RPEG Ltd 2007)
- 20. Cousins feat. Doc Gyneco & Cilvaringz
- 06. Chi Kung feat. Beretta 9 & Cilvaringz
- 07. You'll Never Know feat. Cilvaringz
- Skunk Fu [Main Theme]
- 01. Guerilla Hood
- 10. A Lil' Story
- 03. Silver Rings feat. Ghostface Killah
- All Songs.
- Nederlands Grootste Nachtmerrie (Top Notch / Universal, 2007)
- I (Universal / Babygrande / Top Notch / Entak Japan / Nocturne France, 2007)
- The Mammoth Tusk (Eslamaphobic Records, 2009)
- Horr (Top Notch / Universal / Fassiphone, 2009)
- Once Upon A Time In Shaolin... (Scluzay/Ezclziv, 2015)
- 06. Cousins feat. RZA & Cilvaringz
- 10. Dutch Touch feat. Extince, Furiuz Stylez, Masta Lee, Rizky Rough, Roodrunna, Rowdy, Yukkie B & Cilvaringz
- 12. Neckbone feat. RZA & Cilvaringz
- 15. Shouf Shouf Habibi feat. Brainpower, Casablanca Connect & Cilvaringz
- 10. Total Dubios feat. Cilvaringz
- 10. Lif L'ba Ta Ata feat. Cilvaringz
- 04. Homage To RZA feat. Blue Raspberry, TheFEW & Cilvaringz
- Various Artists - Let It Flow Soundtrack (Hemp Higher Records, 2013)
- 06. Bring The Riots Back feat. Shogun Assasson, Shabazz The Disciple, Christ Bearer & Cilvaringz
- 07. Man, Woman & Child feat. DomPachino of Killarmy
Since 2002, Cilvaringz performed 163 live shows in over 55 countries across five continents. He cites Bulgaria, Chile, Poland and Australia as his favorite places to perform with South Africa, Namibia, Ireland and India as the last few countries remaining on his wishlist.
Cilvaringz and RZA were the first ever Hip Hop artists to perform live in Bulgaria and Latvia. The sold out Bulgaria show took place at the Winter Palace Of Sports in Sofia on March 20, 2003 with 11.000 people in attendance and 3 million viewers watching a live broadcast of the concert on television. It remains the biggest ever Hip Hop concert in Bulgaria to date. The grand success of the sold out Latvian show started a chain of Hip Hop concerts in the following years.
- Brad Mills. "Cilvaringz | Biography & History". AllMusic. Retrieved 2015-10-26.
- "Exclusive interview with Wu-Tang killa bee Cilvaringz on Wu-Tang Corp. - The Official Site of the Wu-Tang Clan". Wutang-corp.com. 2007-03-23. Retrieved 2015-10-26.
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