Pharma Bro Martin Shkreli was arrested on securities fraud by the FBI just one day after it was learned that he was the sole buyer of a $2 million single copy of the special edition Wu-Tang album, Once Upon A Time in Shaolin. In an interesting piece by Jake Paine on Ambrosia For Heads, it was found that Shkreli purchased the album from RZA, but has yet to be given the product. It seems that the despised investor, who jacked up the price for an HIV drug by over 5000%, also engaged in some questionable business dealings that led the Feds to his door Thursday morning. Although Shkreli joked about paying for Bobby Shmurda’s bail and trying to gain some sort of street cred, he will first have to bail himself out of jail.
This type of bravado and controversy may indeed help the hated multi-millionaire re-brand himself, but it is unknown what negative impact this may have on RZA, who received backlash for selling the album to Shkreli. Some people have voiced their distaste for RZA doing business with such a low-life, but isn’t that what modern-day rap is about to some degree? Rap never dodged away from people with shady histories. Instead, the underbelly of society is, usually accepted with open arms and sometimes glorified. Shkreli even sounds like a rapper when he says, “I fucking make money. That’s what I do. That’s why I can fucking afford a fucking $2 million album. What do you think I do, make cookies? No, motherfucker. I sell drugs. (AFH)” Amazingly, his arrest today may solidify his credentials to some of the more apathetic among us. In a weird way, it seems like Shkreli may actually benefit from going to jail for a little while.