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#ThrowbackThursday: “The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly)” by Missy Elliott

Missy Elliott released her debut single "The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly)" in 1997.
  – Missy Elliott released her debut single "The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly)" in 1997.

by Sean Smith

When Katy Perry performed at the Super Bowl XLIX halftime show Sunday evening, she brought out a special guest performer that surprised many. Missy Elliott, who has been largely out of the music spotlight for the better part of the last decade, performed for roughly three and a half minutes and did a medley of some of her more well known hits. The Virginia emcee performed “Get Ur Freak On”, “Work It”, and “Lose Control”.

Missy Elliott’s performance at the Super Bowl has given her music career a bit of a resurgence in the days that have followed. The three songs that she performed have shot to the top of the iTunes charts. As of writing this (Wed. 2/4) Missy’s “Work It” is sitting at #7, “Get Ur Freak On” is at #8, and “Lose Control” has made it to the #14 spot. This sudden resurgence in sales is not just because some of her old fans are getting digital copies of songs they once had on CD, Missy Elliott has gained a new younger group of fans who had no idea that she or her music ever existed.

One young Twitterer, who shall remain nameless out of sympathy on my part, tweeted during the halftime show, “Who is this Missy Elliott? Katy Perry is about to make her famous.”.  Missy has taken it all in stride on her official Twitter (@MissyElliott) tweeting out “I think it’s cool new kids think i’m a new artist that goes to show u that I’m still on [fire] & will rip down stages 20 yrs later”. With Missy’s music finding a new audience since her halftime appearance, this week on #tbt we want to remember an early Missy Elliott classic with “The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly)”.

Missy Elliott has been in the music industry since the early 1990s. She first got her start as part of an R&B group named Sista, whose debut-album was never released. Elliott then moved on to team up with her longtime friend Timbaland, working together as a songwriting/production team. The two crafted songs for the likes of SWV, Total, and most famously Aaliyah. But in 1997, Missy Elliott teamed up with Timbaland to craft her own solo debut album Supa Dupa Fly. The first single from the album was “The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly)”. The song itself was met with moderate success on the charts, reaching #4 on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart. However, as has been the case with much of Missy Elliott’s music, the video for “The Rain” was greeted with critical-acclaim. The video was directed by Hype Williams and was nominated for Best Rap Video at the 1997 MTV VMA’s.

So in light of Missy Elliott’s resurgence on the iTunes charts, thanks to her appearance during the Super Bowl halftime show, this week we remember her 1997 debut single “The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly)”. Enjoy!

 Missy Elliott

“The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly)”

From: Supa Dupa Fly

The Goldmind, Inc.,/Elektra Records