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Clifford Smith is an American hip hop artist; record producer, actor, and member of the hip hop collective Wu-Tang Clan. He was born in April 1, 1971. He is best known by his stage name Method Man, He took his stage name from the 1979 film The Fearless Young Boxer, also known as Method Man.
His name also refers to the slang method, meaning marijuana in his native Staten Island. He won a Grammy for Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group for Ill Be There for You/Youre all I Need with Mary J. Blige.
Method Man grew up in the Park Hill projects with his mother and two sisters, one younger, one older. At various times he has claimed to have dropped out of high school in the ninth and eleventh grades, and sold and experimented with drugs.
Reality smacked me in the face early. Thats why I dont like to talk about my childhood. He was a founding member of the hip-hop supergroup Wu-Tang Clan, has worked solo, with current partner-in-rhyme Redman.
Method Man currently lives on Staten Island. He was engaged to his wife in 1995 and was married in 2000. He has a son and a daughter. As Wu-Tang Clan ascended to hip hop stardom, Method Man was always one of the most visible members of the collective.
He was one of only two members to get a solo song on the groups debut album Enter the Wu-Tang: 36 Chambers and he was the first to release a solo album under the Clans unusual contract which allowed its members to release albums under any record label.
Method Mans solo debut, Tical was critically acclaimed and extremely popular, entering the American charts at #4 and eventually selling in excess of one million copies. He soon collaborated with Mary J. Blige and Redman for a series of hit singles, one of which won a Grammy. On June 3, 1997 the Wu Tang Clan released their Grammy-nominated multiplatinum double CD Wu-Tang Forever, the long-awaited follow up to 36 Chambers.
The chart-topping phenomenon made CNN for the massive sales the group achieved without the mainstream or pop sound and appeal. The hip hop album has sold over 8.3 million copies to date worldwide.
His second solo album was Tical 2000: Judgement Day, which was heavily influenced by the apocalypse theories surrounding the forthcoming end of the millennium, and which featured myriad guest appearances, from his fellow Clansmen. The album was certified Platinum.
Other guest stars include Lisa Left Eye Lopes, DAngelo, Chris Rock, Mobb Deep, Redman, and brief cameos from Russell Simmons, Bishop Don Magic Juan, Janet Jackson, and even Donald Trump.
The album sold even better than his first fueled by the party track Judgment Day and the DAngelo collaboration Break Ups 2 Make Ups, earning Platinum and Gold certifications in the U.S. and Canada respectively. Producers on this album included Tru Master and the RZA.
Standouts include Step By Step, Spazzola, Elements, Killin Fields, Cradle Rock, Suspect Chin Music, Retro Godfather, and Shaolin What, which is one of the previously mentioned lyrical skits with no chorus.
Method Man was part of the hugely successful Hard Knock Life Tour with Jay-Z, Redman, and DMX. The Wu Tang Clan released The W on November 21, 2000 and Iron Flag on December 18, 2001.
The W received both critical and commercial success for the group, while Iron Flag did receive some but not to the effect of The W. The efforts earned two more platinum plaques for the Wu Tang Clan. In 2004, Meth released his third solo album Tical 0: The Prequel, which featured the hit party single Whats Happenin with Busta Rhymes.
Hip Hop critics voiced their displeasure with the album, many agreeing that Tical 0 felt like generic party rap and featured too many mainstream guests, detracting from his own performances.
However he has been touring strongly all over the world to promote the album, and has appeared onstage with fellow Wu-Tang member Inspectah Deck. In early May 2007 Method Mans camp leaked the street single New York New York which became a popular track on the internet.
He is expected to contribute to LL Cool Js highly anticipated album Exit 13. On August 17th, Method Man told MTV he is working on a new album called Crystal Method.