“Momma I'm so Sorry” set off their tirade, followed by the underground classic, “We Got It for Cheap,” referring to the title of the mixtape series they launched in 2005, Vol. 1 and Vol. 2 , when Jive Records wouldn't let their CD see the light of shelves. (For more details about their forced hiatus, visit www.clipseonline.com .)
“From VA to L.A.,” the Virginia Beach-bred duo repeated throughout the night. “We like how that sounds.” Both men were amped as they proceeded to “highlight the past, present and future” of the Clipse and their Re-Up Gang Records roster.
Next was the group's verse from Baby of Cash Money's club banger “What Happened to that Boy,” “Keys Open Doors” and “Cot Damn,” featuring Re-Up member Ab-Liva, who stuck around for his cameos on “Ride Around Shining” and “What's Up.” Another Re-Up ringer, Sandman came out for “Ain't Cha.”
Then, after riling fans up with “Chinese New Year,” “Wamp Wamp (What It Do)” sans Slim Thug and “Virginia,” the visibly heated Clipse vanished. What, I thought to myself, no “Grindin'” – the hit single from their Platinum-selling debut, Lord Willin' – or “Mr. Me Too” – Hell Hath No Fury's single?
The crowd roared. They too knew this was not the end. “Who wants more?” the MC asked. “Let me hear you.” The crowd cheered crazily.
DJ No Doubt cued up “Grindin'” as Malice and Pusha T returned to sing along with the fans screaming out their lyrics. The finale: “Mr. Me Too.” I knew it.
The Clipse shot to fame in 2002, powered by the production of the Neptunes on their debut Lord Willin' . (The Neptunes factor alone has guaranteed them a well-rounded fan base, as evidence by those in attendance at El Rey.) Their latest hit stores in late 2006.
In between releases, they've been featured on projects by everyone from Diddy to Justin Timberlake and made their mark in the mixtape game. Despite label drama, the streets' favorite rappers have done well for themselves.And contrary to the song title that played as the Clipse exited the stage, they aren't having “Nightmares” anymore.