Just one year ago, the Hip Hop community took a great, unexpected loss of Albert Johnson aka Prodigy of legendary rap duo Mobb Deep. He was 42 years old.
Prodigy’s legacy in the Hip Hop game spans almost three decades, beginning his career with his lifetime partner in rhyme and crime, Havoc, as the two were once known as the Poetical Prophets. Even before their Mobb Deep fame, Hav and P appeared in The Source Magazine‘s coveted “Unsigned Hype” in 1991 as Poetical Prophets. In 1995, the crew soared to their living legend status with The Infamous album, with “Shook Ones”, arguably one of the best Hip Hop songs of all time. powering the momentum of their sophomore album.
After the global success of four consecutive Mobb Deep full length projects, P knew it was time to set out on a solo venture, dropping the H.N.I.C. album at the turn of the century, placing him once again in a battle for the top spot rap feud with Jay-Z after just abruptly ending the beef with Tupac Shakur only a few years earlier after ‘Pac was shot and killed in Las Vegas on September 7, 1996.
After Prodigy dropped the second installment of the H.N.I.C. series, he turned himself in to NYS Prison to serve three years for weapons possession after he was found with a handgun in a vehicle with him and Alchemist in midtown Manhattan. While incarcerated, P released his book, My Infamous Life: The Autobiography of Mobb Deep’s Prodigy and dropped The Ellsworth Bumpy Johnson EP immediately upon his release.
The lyrical half of Mobb Deep dropped another solo project and the eighth Mobb Deep project, The Infamous Mobb Deep, before his untimely passing in a Las Vegas hospital last year.
Even though Prodigy is physically gone, he lives on through his music, his family and the impact his artistry left on the world.
Check out this exclusive TheSource.com interview below with Prodigy from 2012 in Bad Boy’s Daddy’s House Studios.