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March 26, 2011  | by: Jasmina Cuevas

The Clipse

The Virginia Beach Hip-Hop duo, The Clipse, was formed in 1992 by brothers Gene “Malice” Thornton and Terrence “Pusha T” Thornton. The Clipse career had a slow take off regardless of being supported by Pharrell Williams but quickly sky rocketed in 2001 after being signed to Arista Records. Williams signed the duo to Arista Records through his Star Trak Entertainment imprint.

After being signed the duo dropped the album “Lord Willin” in August of 2002 and the album opened at number 1 on the Billboard’s Top R&B/Hip-hop Album chart and number 4 on the Billboard Hot 200. The album was on major rotation at radio stations and the two major hits “Grindin” and “When The Last Time”  from the album put the duo on the map. The album went gold and the success from it got the duo features on other artists singles including Justin Timberlake, Birdman, Nivea, etc.

Even though the duo got some success from the album they went through many changes and ups and downs. Fast forward through record label changes, mixtape releases, the forming of The Re-Up Gang and being 1 out of only 5 artists to get a 5-star rating in XXL, The Clipse has officially decided to show everyone the two sides to the duo. The two sides that could not be told apart until now.

After the release of their last album, “Til the Casket Drops”, The Clipse took a turn onto a different road then many expected. Coming from a life filled with drugs, money, and drama, Malice turned to religion and decided to put his music on pause.

On February 14th, Malice released the book, “Wretched, Pitiful, Poor, Blind And Naked”. The book is based on Malice’s life and he speaks about his lowest points in life, his childhood, his family life and his time as a rapper. Since released, the book has received high regards and Malice has attended many book signings, the most recent being in Brooklyn, NY. Though he never expected to write a book, Malice embraces the opportunity to speak on his life and hopes to help others understand the lifestyle he lived and hopes that many can relate.

In 2010, Pusha T released the news that he was signed to Kanye West’s GOOD Music Label. After making some major noise on Kanye’s recent album, “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy”, fans could not get enough of Pusha T. His rap verses on the singles “So Appalled” and “Runaway” showed a different side of Pusha T that we couldn’t see before because he was part of a duo.

Since being signed to GOOD Music, Pusha T has molded into an amazing rap artist and has shown his skills as a hip-hop artist that were being out-shined by being in a group. Since releasing music on his own, Pusha T’s personality as an individual has shined through and fan base of his own has increasingly grown. Pusha T released his new mixtape, “Fear of God” last week and it has gotten far more praise than expected.

I, for one, have not enjoyed an entire mixtape from an artist since Drake but “Fear of God” has done just that. Whether it is his funny side on “Touch It” featuring Kanye West or the side that is still trying to understand the connection to his past life on “I Still Wana”, every single on the mixtape shows a different personality of Pusha T and lets us into a different part of his life.

Even though The Clipse is currently not making music as a group, the achievements they have conquered as individuals have bypassed the absence of the group. Whether they are releasing books or music, Pusha T and Malice are both giving us the opportunity to hear the story of their lives and connect through their talents, pay attention.

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