Long Island, NY deejay/producer DJ Concept hits the turntables and prepares a befitting tribute to Queensbridge/Long island finest voices with his “RIP Prodigy “. The mix is a non-stop, 23-minute live mix that Concept recorded shortly after learning of the Queensbridge artist’s passing. It pays homage to the legendary emcee by showcasing many of the original samples that he rapped over, either as a solo artist or as one half of Mobb Deep.
“It’s my homage to Prodigy and his soundscape, which was very influential to my sound as a producer,” Concept explains. “Banging joints like ‘The Realest,’ ‘Keep It Thoro,’ ‘HNIC’… I remember thinking, ‘This is the sound I wish I could make.’”
RIP Prodigy kicks off with a chills-inducing a cappella recording of Prodigy rapping his opening bars of “Shook Ones Part II.” Then, you’re treated to more audio from P that pops up in between a slew of soul and funk originals that’ll leave you revisiting his and Mobb Deep’s catalogue all over again. #InfamousForever.DJ Concept Online:
On the 20th of June, The Hip Hop community was shook to its foundation at the death of Mobb Deep member Prodigy. Prodigy and his rhyme partner Havoc were pioneers in their very own right and made incredible contributions to the rise of the East Coast hardcore rap in the 90s.
As a duo they released multiple projects and songs that cemented their legendary status in Hip-Hop. From the classic sophomore LP “Infamous” to “Infamy” and a slew of singles/B-sides, Havoc provided dark, grimy beats that helped accentuate the duo’s visual story telling from a stark reality point of view. Although both emcees on more occasions deliver intriguing verses, Prodigy is probably the more intense of the two. Armed with a slightly raspy vocal tone that commands an air of respect on every listen, Prodigy’s intense lyrics are often used as the back bone for many tracks.
Today we look at the different songs from other artists that utilized Prodigy’s vocals in their choruses.
1) Jay Z – “D’Evils”
Producer: Dj Premier
Album: Reasonable Doubt
Jay phoned Primo and told him exactly what he wanted on the chorus. A line from Prodigy and another from Snoop Dogg‘s “Murder Was The Case” and the result is haunting. Jay hasn’t made a dark record like this since then.
Prodigy’s vocals: “Illuminati wants my mind, soul and my body…”
Song: LL Cool J: “Who shot ya remix”
Medina Green, Mos Def – “Cross Town Beef”
Album: Sound Bombing II
Mos Def’s brother’s group had a run in the late 90s but this song off the classic Rawkus’s Sound Bombing series is one of their best efforts. The story telling is fresh and compelling enough to check out their projects.
The choppy Posdnous produced song may not be mind blowing in this day and age but it works well with the theme of this song where an ordinary situation turns deadly from an imminent beef. The hook crafted by mos def utilizes P’s lines to sum up the results.
Prodigy’s vocals: “Getting close to God in a tight situation/ When the slugs penetrate you feel the burning sensation…”
Song: “Shook Ones pt II”
Masta Ace – Conflict ft. Guru (Remix)
Producer: DJ Paul Nice
Album:Underground HipHop Essentials Compilation
Another lost gem from MA off the’ Underground HipHop Essential Compilation‘. Tales of conflict from different views with similar results.
Prodigy’s vocals: “Speak the wrong words man and you will get touched...”
Song: Shook ones pt II
Dilated People: “Worst comes to worst”
Arguably one of the top 4 Dilated Peoples song. he Alchemist cooks up a head nodder of a beat equipped with this eternal line from P.
Prodigy’s vocals:: “Worst comes to worst my peoples comes first...”
Song: “Survival of the Fittest”
Big Pun- “Beware”
Album: ‘Capital Punishment’
A lotta young cats will never understand HOW dope Pun was. He was essentially the new Biggie (yeah I said it). he could craft radio friendly jams(“Still not a player“, “Punish Me” and hardcore gems like this Juju produced song “Beware”.
This grim song came with face crunching verbal punches and a threat from Prodigy.
Prodigy’s vocals:- “I gave you fair warning- beware, beware…”
Song: Shook ones
O.C. : “O- Zone”
O.C’s debut is a classic by all standards and I must say his vocals are a staple for many hip-hop producers(look up “Times Up”. This mellow boom bap track crafted by Buckwild made use of P’s unique vocals from the obscure Shook Ones
Prodigy’s vocals: “The first time will be your last Earth memories..”
Song: Shook ones
Ice T – “Forced to do dirt”
Album:’Return Of The Real VI’
Ice T’s 96 album saw the OG return to true form and he brings it to full closure on this song(not sure who produced it).
Prodigy’s vocals” “…So niggas is forced to do dirt...”
Song: Shook ones
Group Home : “Tha Realness”
Producer: Dj Premier
This project made in ’95 made Christiana Aguilera recruit primo for her project in the mid 00s. This was the project that saw Primo in rare form when it comes to the beats- this was when premier became DJ PREMIER.
To be fair, the rapping wasn’t all that bad. Lil Dap and the Nutcracker are actually nice, ok maybe to a smaller degree- I mean it could be better but I’m pretty sure you have heard worst.
As for the hook here, who else can bring that “realness” besides the HNIC’s commanding vocals?
Prodigy’s vocals: “Tha realness…comes equipped...” on other parts of the song
Song:: Shook ones pt II
Fat Joe – “The Crack Attack”
Album: ‘Don Cartegena’
Fat Joe’s 3rd album produced gems like “John Blaze”, “Don cartagena” and this L.E.S produced banger “The Crack Attack”. Sending shots at his foes and letting them know that this time, he ain’t playing games.
Prodigy’s vocals: “Take these words home and think it through or the next rhyme I write might be about you”
Song: Shook ones pt II
Krumb Snatcha : “Gettin’ Closer To God”
Producer: DJ Premier
Primo and Krumb Snatcha made grimy banging music and this is no exception. KS talks about being a victim of gun violence and P’s famous line literally puts things in perspective. Once again Primo samples Prodigy and Snoop.
Prodigy’s vocals: “…Getting closer to God in a tight situation”
Song: Shook ones pt II
Ali Vegas – “The Specialist”
Album: In Too Deep Soundtrack
The overly slept on Queens rapper Ali Vegas dropped this gem back in 1999. Taken from the soundtrack to the American crime thriller flick “In Too Deep”. He was kicking futuristic bars all over this mellow jazz-esque backdrop and topped it up with a bunch of classic line from Prodigy.
Prodigy’s vocals: “.that’s why your small rhyme bore me/Your store bought rap ain’t shit
Call me the specialist, professional../..that’s why your small rhyme bore me/My category: rap-rap science..””
Song: G.O.D. pt III
I was just chilling going about my day when I was recently informed by Amanda Mester of Ambrosia For Heads that Albert Johnson aka Prodigy has passed away at the age of 42. According to multiple sources Prodigy was hospitalized a couple days ago after a show in Vegas. Causes of his death are still unknown. Prodigy is easily one of the best to ever touch a mic. Rest In Peace Prodigy. Check out a couple joints below.
The Alchemist has a signature style almost absolute from the essential hip hop formula. His penchant for building boom-bap tracks around slashing 80s guitar riffs and morose piano samples clearly denotes why he has been able to flourish in a field ranging from Mobb Deep and Roc Marciano to last year’s sleeper hit “Cats and Dogs” with Dilated Peoples representative Evidence.
When he works for himself, however, the results are bit mixed. Obviously “Vodka & Ayahuasca,” the latest effort from the Alchemist and Oh No group Gangrene, is not entirely resting on his shoulders. Yet his influence feels so pronounced, even on Oh No productions, that he truly deserves most of the credit for the outcome.
“Ayahuasca” comes off as a skittering, drug-addled night on the town. A person would have to be inherently reckless to even consider smoking, injecting, or even buying a drug that they probably never heard of before, and that reflects in every crevice of this album. The rhymes are gritty and dense, taking the reins of the obsidian-sharp, caustic beats that slosh around without aim.
But not much is really going on that wows or truly impresses. I have listened to this album at least ten times over in the past five days and each run through is full of half-hearted enthusiasm or absent-minded perseverance. I enjoy “Dump Truck,” with its aquatic production and Prodigy on his “imperial goon” agenda, and “Due Work,” with an overtly complex piano sample and the thumping drums assisting the Gangrene pair as they trade bars, yet I had to listen to those songs again in order to say that.
This is a rare case of a rap album claiming to be hardcore and edgy leaving a slightly upsetting spill instead of a cataclysmic mess of rock-star proportions, because that’s clearly what they what they were shooting for. The album comes nowhere near to being an undercooked collection of beats and leftover rhymes, but perhaps the lack of focus in each song and the useless sound snippets tacked on to every other track bears the blame for that assumption. At the least, if anybody needed good-sounding background music that doesn’t overwhelm, “Ayahuasca” is there to fill the void.
Cats & Dogs is the second studio album by emcee Evidence. It’s his first on the Minneapolis label Rhymesayers and the follow up to The Weatherman LP which dropped in 2008. This album has received a lot of request for a review. It was highly anticipated in the hip hop community.
Check out what Dead End Hip Hop has to say about the Dilated Peoples crew members second album. No Politics. No B.S.