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Inside Raekwon's Closet

The veteran rapper of the Wu-Tang Clan talks sneakers and his upcoming album, “Fly International Luxurious Art.”

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Raekwon

Corey Woods has spent more than two decades making hip-hop music, and he’s amassed quite a collection of kicks along the way.

The Wu-Tang Clan rapper, better known by stage name Raekwon, likes to keep it casual when it comes to footwear and owns an ensemble of more than 1,000 sneakers.

“I’m a super-sneakerhead,” Raekwon said. “Sneakers have a lot to do with my rhyming.”

His passion for kicks and hip-hop will merge together in his upcoming album, “Fly International Luxurious Art,” due out this June.

“[‘F.I.L.A.’] is all about glamour, lifestyle and fashion,” Raekwon said. “All of those elements are going to be in the music.”

Raekwon is also in talks to collaborate with a major athletic brand for special product and to fete the launch of the album.

Here, the New York-based rapper took some time to talk with Footwear News about his collection of sneakers.

Brands owned: Gucci, New Balance, Asics, Adidas Y-3, Nike, Fila, Jordan Brand, Timberland

Pairs owned: “Too many. Altogether, I’d say I’ve gone through about 2,000 pairs of sneakers since I was 16.”

I got into sneakers when… “Run DMC put on Adidas. It was crazy.”

Favorite pair for performances: “I like running shoes when I’m on stage because I always want to be comfortable. I prefer a pair of New Balance because they’re really durable and the grip is good on stage. The style is cool, too, because I could wear them with jeans or sweats and still be comfortable.”

Go-to pair: Gucci Tennis 84. “I would say that’s one of my favorite shoes. There’s something elegant about those. I have more than 50 pairs [of them].”

Best shopping spots: “I like hitting Soho [in New York]. Sometimes I’ll go uptown to 145th Street.”

Organization strategy: “I can never keep them organized. With that many shoes, you just have to walk around and rediscover shoes you forgot you had.”

Must-have pair for relaxing: “I always love throwing on a pair of Air Jordan 13s to walk around the house.”