Method Man (born Clifford Smith, 2 March 1971 in Hempstead, Long Island, New York) is an American rapper and member of the hip-hop collective, Wu-Tang Clan. He is also well-known for his work both as a solo artist and with frequent collaborator Redman, as well as for recent forays into acting.
Method Man spent a childhood split between separated parents in Long Island and Staten Island, and in an apparent precursor to his career in hip hop was introduced both to playing drums and to poetry by his father. Not only was Method interested in music, he was also fascinated by comic books and particularly Ghost Rider, a fascination which manifested itself years later in several of his many rap aliases. His pre-hip hop adult life was mostly split between drug dealing and low-paid jobs (including a stint working at the Statue of Liberty, along with future Wu-Tang colleague U-God). After becoming well known on the streets for his rhyming abilities, he joined with 8 friends to form the Wu-Tang Clan in the early 1992.
Since the Wu-Tang Clan's ascendancy to hip hop stardom, Method Man has always been one of the most visible members of the collective. He was one of only two of the group to get a solo song on the group's debut album Enter the Wu-Tang: 36 Chambers and he was the first to release a solo album under the Clan's unusual contract which allows its members to release albums under any record label (Method chose to sign with legendary rap label Def Jam). Method Man's solo debut, Tical (1994) 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 with a series of hit singles, one of which (the Blige duet "I'll Be There For You/You're All I Need To Get By") won a Grammy, before recording the second Wu-Tang album, Wu-Tang Forever.
His second solo album was Tical 2000: Judgement Day (1998), which was heavily influenced by the apocalypse theories surrounding the forthcoming end of the millennium, and which featured a vast amount of guest appearances, from his fellow Clansmen to Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes, D'Angelo, Chris Rock, Mobb Deep, Redman and even Donald Trump. The album sold even better than his first, though reviews were mixed and its long running time and the abundance of between-song comedy skits were criticised by many.
Method Man then toured with Jay-Z and recorded Blackout! with Redman, a light-hearted, fun record with an EPMD-evoking emphasis on funky beats and the mischievous wit and cool flows of the two MCs.
In the twenty-first century, Method Man forged a successful career in acting. As well as his 1998 appearance in the film Belly along with fellow rappers Nas and DMX, Method has also appeared in 187 Oz, How High (a stoner film with Redman), The Wire, My Baby's Daddy, Garden State and Soul Plane, while continuing to record with the Wu-Tang Clan. He also co-starred with Redman in his own Fox sitcom called Method & Red, however after only a short time on the air the show was put on hiatus and never returned. Method Man later complained in the press about Fox's influence on the show's style, claiming that "there's been too much compromise on our side and not enough on their side" and bemoaning the network's decision to add a laugh track.
In 2004, Meth released his third album Tical 0: The Prequel, which spawned a successful single in "What's Happenin" with Busta Rhymes, but was poorly received both by critics and fans. There was trouble even before the album's release when Method apparently complained to the press about excessive interference from Def Jam over the album's beats (Meth supposedly desired more input from Wu-Tang leader RZA). On its release, many fans and critics were taken aback by its strong "mainstream" or "commercial" sound, highlighted by the guest appearances of pop-rap stars of the time Missy Elliot, P. Diddy and Ludacris. However, the album sold reasonably well, selling more than any of the other Wu-Tang solo projects released at around the same time. There was good news in early 2005 for fans who were disappointed with The Prequel as Method Man announced that a new RZA-produced album would be released later in the year. The album ultimately never materialized in 2005, though RZA and Meth continue to work on the album and are now aiming for a mid-2006 release date.
Big John Stud
The Ghost Rider (from the comic Ghost Rider)
Johnny Blaze (from the comic Ghost Rider)
MZA ("The Mizza")
The Panty Raider
Shakwon (5% Nation "righteous name")
1994 Tical (Platinum)
1998 Tical 2000: Judgement Day (Platinum)
1999 Blackout! (with Redman) (Platinum)
2004 Tical 0: The Prequel
2006 4:21 The Day After
2009 Blackout! 2 (with Redman)
Singles and EPs
1994 "Bring The Pain"
1995 "I'll Be There For You/You're All I Need To Get By" (with Mary J. Blige)
1995 "Release Yo' Delf"
1998 "Break Ups 2 Make Ups"
1998 "Judgement Day"'
1998 "Grand Finale" (with DMX, Nas & Ja Rule)
1999 "Tear It Off" (Method Man & Redman)
1999 "Da Rockwilder" (Method Man & Redman)
1999 "Y.O.U." (Method Man & Redman)
2004 "What's Happenin" (with Busta Rhymes)
2005 "The Show"
1993 Enter the Wu-Tang: 36 Chambers (album by the Wu-Tang Clan)
1994 "The What" (from the The Notorious B.I.G. album Ready to Die)
1995 "Dirty Dancin" (from the Ol' Dirty Bastard album Return To The 36 Chambers: The Dirty Version)
1995 "Got The Flava" (from the Showbiz & AG album Goodfellas)
1995 "Wu-Gambinos" & "Ice Cream" (from the Raekwon album Only Built 4 Cuban Linx)
1995 "Living In The World Today", "Shadowboxin" & "Gold" (from the GZA album Liquid Swords)
1995 "The Riddler" (from the Batman Forever Soundtrack)
1996 "Box In Hand" (from the Ghostface Killah album Ironman)
1996 "Box In Hand (Remix)" (Ghostface Killah single)
1996 "Got My Mind Made Up" (from the 2Pac album All Eyez On Me)
1996 "Do What Ya Feel" (from the Redman album Muddy Waters)
1996 "Extortion" (from the Mobb Deep album Hell On Earth)
1996 "Hit 'Em High" (from the Space Jam soundtrack)
1997 Wu-Tang Forever (album by the Wu-Tang Clan)
1997 "Milk The Cow", "Supa Ninjaz" & "Dart Throwing" (from the Cappadonna album The Pillage)
1997 "Next Up" & "Collaboration 98" (from the Sunz Of Man album The Last Shall Be First)
1997 "4,3,2,1" (from the LL Cool J album Phenonemon)
1998 "Well All Rite Cha" (from the Redman album Doc's Da Name 2000)
1998 "Pussy Pop" (from the Xzibit album 40 Dayz & 40 Nightz)
1998 "Whatcha Gonna Do" (from the Jayo Felony album Whatcha Gonna Do)
1998 "The Worst" (from the Onyx album Shut 'Em Down)
1999 "Rumble" (from the U-God album The Golden Arms Redemption)
1999 "Am I My Brother's Keeper" (from the Shyheim album Manchild)
1999 "Fuck Them" (from the Raekwon album Immobilarity)
1999 "Left & Right" (from the D'Angelo album Voodoo)
1999 "Stringplay" (from the GZA album Beneath The Surface)
1999 "N 2 Gether Now" (from the Limp Bizkit album Significant Other)
1999 "Half Man Half Amazin" (from the Pete Rock album Soul Survivor)
1999 "Three Amigos (If It's On)" (from the Popa Wu album Visions Of The Tenth Chamber)
1999 "NYC Everything" (from the RZA album Bobby Digital In Stereo)
1999 "Simon Says (Remix)" (from the Pharoahe Monch album Internal Affairs)
2000 "Buck 50" (from the Ghostface Killah album Supreme Clientele)
2000 "Fuhgidabowdit" (from the LL Cool J album G.O.A.T.)
2000 "Rollin' (Urban Assault Vehicle)" (from the Limp Bizkit album Chocolate Starfish and the Hot Dog Flavored Water)
2000 The W (album by the Wu-Tang Clan)
2000 "Ghetto Celebrity" (from the album In The Mode by Roni Size & Reprazent
2001 "La Rhumba" & "Glocko Pop" (from the RZA album Digital Bullet)
2001 "Enjoy Da Ride" (from the Redman album Malpractice)
2001 "Dog In Heat" (from the Missy Elliott album Miss E…So Addictive)
2001 "Party & Bullshit" (from the Rush Hour 2 soundtrack)
2001 Iron Flag (album by the Wu-Tang Clan)
2001 "Red Meth And Bee" (from the Cypress Hill album Stoned Raiders)
2002 "Flowers" (from the Ghostface Killah album Bulletproof Wallets)
2003 "Respect Mine" (from the Mathematics album Love, Hell Or Right)
2003 "Love @ 1st Sight" (from the Mary J. Blige album Love & Life)
2003 "We Pop (Remix)" (RZA single)
2003 "Bring The Pain" (from the Missy Elliott album This Is Not A Test!)
2003 "Ice Cream Part 2" (from the Raekwon album Lex Diamonds Story)
2003 "Noble Art" (from the IAM album Revoir Un Printemps)
2003 "Rock 'N' Roll" (from the Naughty By Nature album Icons)
2004 "Secret Rivals" (from the Masta Killa album No Said Date)
2004 "The Drummer" (from the Theodore Unit album 718)
2004 Disciples of the 36 Chambers: Chapter 1 (album by the Wu-Tang Clan)
2005 "Head Rush", "John 3:16" & "Spot Lite" (from the Mathematics album The Problem)
2005 "All My Niggas", "Shoot On Sight (S.O S.)" & "Street Education" (from the Streetlife album Street Education)
2005 "High Rollers" (from the Proof album Searching for Jerry Garcia)
2005 "Still On It" (from the Ashanti album Collectables by Ashanti)
2006 "9 Milli Bros." (from the Ghostface Killah album Fishscale)