Method Man
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Born Clifford Smith on Staten Island, Method Man and his mush-mouthed rapping style electrified the 1993 debut album by the hip-hop collective Wu-Tang Clan. The incredibly dark, raw sound of Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) influenced many rappers, and the album eventually reached gold status. As part of the Wu-Tang Clan's contract, each member had the authority to sign separate solo contracts, so Method Man moved to Def Jam for his solo debut Tical. The single "Bring the Pain" just missed the Top 40 in 1994, but the following year "I'll Be There for You/You're All I Need to Get By" (his duet with Mary J. Blige) reached number three in the charts. His second duet, "How High" featuring Redman, hit the Top 15 in August 1995. A single with Wu-Tang mates Raekwon and Ghost Face Killer breached the Top 40 later that year. Tical 2: Judgment Day followed in 1998, and a year later Method Man resurfaced with Blackout!, his long-awaited collaboration with Redman. ~ John Bush, All Music Guide
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