Terrence LeVarr Thornton was born on May 13, 1977, in The Bronx borough of New York City. Thornton and his family soon relocated to Virginia Beach, Virginia, where he and his brother, Gene 'No Malice' Thornton, grew up. In 1992, Terrence and his brother Gene formed the duo Clipse. With help from American record producer and fellow Virginian Pharrell Williams, the duo eventually signed to Elektra Records in 1997 and released Exclusive Audio Footage, their only album under that label. Of the two brothers, Terrence was more open to features, appearing on Kelis' 1999 single "Good Stuff" and Nivea's 2001 single "Run Away (I Wanna Be with U)", respectively. In 2004, he and his brother launched their record label imprint, Re-Up Records, and formed hip hop group Re-Up Gang, along with fellow rappers Ab-Liva and Sandman. In 2006, they released their third studio album and their most commercial album, Hell Hath No Fury, which was praised by critics. After one more album as the Clipse in 2009, both No Malice and Pusha T announced that they were taking time off from the duo to focus on their own respective solo projects.