Terrence LeVarr Thornton, better known by his stage name Pusha T, is an American rapper, songwriter and record executive. Born in the Bronx borough of New York City, though the family soon relocated to Virginia Beach, Virginia, where he and his brother, Gene Thornton, grew up. As teenagers, the brothers both sold drugs, with Gene eventually being kicked out of their parents’ house after they discovered what he was doing. In 1992, alongside his brother, the two began to pursue a career in hip hop. He rose to prominence as one-half of the hip hop duo Clipse, which was mainly active from 1994 to 2010. His older brother Gene, was known for most of the group’s duration as Malice (the two were originally known as Terrar and Malicious, respectively, and in 2012 Gene changed his stage name to No Malice, following a conversion to Christianity). As Clipse, the two released three studio albums and a number of mixtapes, and had hit singles including “Grindin'” and “When the Last Time” (both 2002).
The duo’s smart and expansive take on the drug game came across like a hip-hop version of The Wire, complete with sterling production by The Neptunes. After Malice found religion, King Push was brought into the G.O.O.D. Music family. His solo work and guest spots continue the tradition of the Clipse by combining razor-sharp rhyming skills with lyrics inspired by the streets.
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