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Mobb Deep performing in 2015
|Also known as||Poetical Prophets|
|Origin||New York City, New York, U.S.|
|Past members|| Havoc |
Mobb Deep was an American hip hop duo from Queensbridge, Queens, New York.The duo consisted of rappers Havoc and Prodigy. They are considered to be among the main progenitors of hardcore East Coast hip hop and hip hop in the mid 1990s. Mobb Deep became one of the most successful rap duos in history, having sold over three million records. Three of their most notable albums were The Infamous (1995), Hell on Earth (1996) and Murda Muzik (1999), and their top hits include "Shook Ones (Part II)", "Survival of the Fittest" and "Hell On Earth (Front Lines)". They were known for their dark and hardcore delivery.
The duo disbanded in 2012 but reunited in 2013.Prodigy died in June 2017. Havoc is currently working on a new Mobb Deep album.
In 1991, Havoc and Prodigy originally went by the name "Poetical Prophets" and began making a demo tape.They would find the addresses of record label headquarters on the back of albums, bring a cassette player, and ask passing artists to listen to their music. The only artist who stopped to hear their music was Q-Tip of A Tribe Called Quest; Prodigy recalled, "[Q-Tip] introduced us to Chris Lighty that day and a bunch of people in the Rush Associated Labels in the Def Jam office—that's how we met everybody." Shortly after, Prodigy signed a solo demo deal with Jive Records and had an uncredited feature on the song "Too Young" by Hi-Five, which appeared on the Boyz n the Hood soundtrack. Jive decided not to sign Poetical Prophets as a duo, however, they were featured in the Unsigned Hype column of The Source in July 1991, which helped promote their demo Flavor for the Nonbelievers. The following year, the duo changed their name to "Mobb Deep" and signed with 4th & B'way Records, releasing the single "Peer Pressure" in promotion of their debut album Juvenile Hell . The album was released in 1993, and later that year, Havoc made a guest appearance on the Black Moon album Enta da Stage , on a song titled "U da Man".
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The group saw its first major success with their second album, The Infamous , released in 1995. Mobb Deep catapulted to the top of the hardcore hip hop scene through Havoc and Prodigy's straightforward narration of street life. In this album, Mobb Deep portrayed the struggles of living in New York City's Queensbridge Houses where Havoc grew up. Following the release of The Infamous..., Mobb Deep became some of the most prolific artists of the East Coast. The production of this album was very dark and sample-based thanks to Havoc, who produced the beats from this point forward, although Q-Tip also contributed to the production and mixing.Furthermore, the hit single "Shook Ones Part II", a remix to the hit Shook Ones, received critical acclaim.
Mobb Deep's third album, Hell on Earth was released in 1996 debuting at number six on the Billboard Album Chart; the album continued the duo's portrayal of harsh street life while further pushing them to the forefront of Hip Hop scene along with contemporary East Coast Rappers like The Notorious B.I.G., Jay-Z, LL Cool J, Wu-Tang Clan and fellow Queensbridge rapper Nas. Nas as well as Method Man, Ghostface Killah and Raekwon of Wu-Tang Clan appear on 'Hell on Earth'.
In 1996, they appeared on the Red Hot Organization's compilation CD, America is Dying Slowly alongside Biz Markie, Wu-Tang Clan and Fat Joe among many other prominent hip hop artists. This compilation was solely meant to raise awareness of the AIDS epidemic among African American men and this compilation was heralded as "a masterpiece" by The Source Magazine, a Hip Hop publication. In 1997, Mobb Deep was featured on Frankie Cutlass "Politics & Bullsh*t" album track title "Know Da Game" which also features Kool G Rap. In 1998, the duo collaborated with reggae dancehall artist Bounty Killer on the track "Deadly Zone" for the soundtrack to Blade , and were a featured artist on the remix of Mariah Carey's single "The Roof (Back in Time)", which was based around a sample of "Shook Ones Part II". In 1999, they released the highly anticipated Murda Muzik album which, despite extensive bootlegging, had the majority of its songs unintentionally leaked. This resulted in delays in the official album release. When the album was officially released, it eventually debuted at number three on the Billboard 200 and quickly received Platinum Certification and was further promoted by the popular single "Quiet Storm". Shortly afterward, Prodigy released his long-awaited solo album H.N.I.C in which he collaborated with fellow artists like (B.G., N.O.R.E.) and producers (including The Alchemist, Rockwilder and Just Blaze).
Mobb Deep was part of the infamous East Coast vs West Coast Hip Hop rivalry that was fueled and increasingly promoted by the private media. The beef started when Snoop Dogg and the West Coast group, Tha Dogg Pound, released "New York, New York" which Mobb Deep, along with Capone-N-Noreaga and Tragedy Khadafi responded with the song "L.A L.A" (This song can be found on Capone-N-Noreaga's debut album The War Report ). This song was released during rapper Tupac Shakur's final days of incarceration. Members of Tupac's group, Outlawz, allegedly attended a Mobb Deep concert; they then visited with Tupac over public rumoring that the duo had snubbed them at the concert. Tupac dissed Mobb Deep on multiple tracks, including: "Hit 'Em Up" and "When We Ride on Our Enemies" in which Tupac makes light of Prodigy's sickle-cell disease. Additional Tupac diss tracks include: "Bomb First (My Second Reply)" where Tupac said "You're barely breathin'" and "Against All Odds", both of which were released on Tupac's posthumous studio album, The Don Killuminati: The 7 Day Theory . Mobb Deep retaliated on their 1996 release of Hell on Earth , which contains a diss track entitled "Drop a Gem on 'Em".
"I was happy about it," Havoc told Jack Thriller. "The nigga saying our names. I didn't know what the fuck the beef was about. I didn't even care. I was like damn, did you hear that? 2Pac dissing us. We about to sell some records." Havoc also revealed that Mobb Deep had never even "crossed paths" with Shakur before his death in September 1996. He added, "And we never got a chance to cross paths with him because he passed away," he said. "I saw him from a long distance but I never met him. [I was a] Fan, but didn't even know him."
Mobb Deep released Infamy while in 2001 the song "Burn" (featuring Vita) was perceived as a response to Jay-Z's diss song "Takeover" on The Blueprint , as was "Crawlin'", in which Prodigy's two verses both mention Jay-Z. The album marked a major stylistic change in which the duo moved away from a raw, minimalist, stripped-down beat toward a commercial friendly in terms with such songs as "Hey Luv (Anything)". This transition fostered accusations of "selling out". In 2003, the group split with Loud Records and released Free Agents: The Murda Mix Tape, in which Havoc and Prodigy proclaimed themselves "free agents" and addressed the group's split with its old label and its search for a new label. Jive Records signed the duo later in the year through a deal with the group's own imprint. Mobb Deep then released Amerikaz Nightmare in 2004. The record sold poorly and led to the group's departure from the label.Today, as a result of various mergers, all of Mobb Deep's studio albums from 1995 to 2004 are owned by Sony Music Entertainment.
In June 2005, Mobb Deep announced they had signed with G-Unit Records. 50 Cent had a connection to Mobb Deep as he grew up in Queens & Havoc had provided production on projects by G-Unit, Lloyd Banks, The Game & Tony Yayo. Mobb Deep released their seventh album, Blood Money in 2006. It features G-Unit members 50 Cent, Lloyd Banks, Tony Yayo & Young Buck as well as Mary J. Blige and Nate Dogg. In 2006, Mobb Deep became the first American hip hop duo to perform in India, via VH1's Hip Hop Hustle. In late 2009, Mobb Deep were released from their contract with G Unit.
On April 4, 2011, Mobb Deep released a new single called "Dog Shit", featuring rapper Nas. This was the first official song by Mobb Deep since Prodigy's release from jail. It was produced by Havoc and Alchemist.
On July 27, 2012, Havoc told AllHipHop in an interview that the group was on an indefinite hiatus. According to HipHopDX, Mobb Deep had a falling out after Havoc blasted Prodigy on Twitter, and eventually, a sound clip leaked of him taking numerous shots at his former Mobb Deep partner during their concert at SXSW. At first, Havoc claimed that he was hacked. However, he later confirmed it was him and that he had originally denied it because he felt that Twitter was not a place to resolve a beef. He also stated that he had a diss track aimed at Prodigy in the making, "Same Shit Different Day".The song later turned out to be "Separated (Real from the Fake)", which appeared on Havoc's solo album 13.
However, in January 2013 Prodigy said that he was sure he would record with Havoc in the future.Mobb Deep appeared on Papoose's debut album The Nacirema Dream on the track "Aim, Shoot". They later reunited and performed for Paid Dues on March 30, 2013; they went on an international 20th-anniversary tour starting in May 2013. On March 22, 2013 the group officially reunited for an interview and explained that music was the most important thing in their lives and that they had been friends for too long to break up the friendship.
Around the May 2013 release of Havoc's third studio album, 13 , Havoc announced that he and Prodigy had been in the studio for over a month working on the duo's eighth studio album which was already "halfway done". He also stated that he will be doing the entire production on the album.
On April 1, 2014, the group released its eighth studio album, The Infamous Mobb Deep , a double album that included one CD with original new music and one with unreleased tracks from sessions from The Infamous.
On June 20, 2017, Prodigy died from accidental choking in Las Vegas, Nevada, while hospitalized for complications caused by sickle cell anemia.
Mobb Deep helped popularize the 1990s slang called the "Dunn language", a term first recorded in the 1999 single "Quiet Storm", in which Prodigy raps: "you's a dick blower, [you] tryin' to speak the Dunn Language?/ "what's the drilly" with that though? "It aint bangin"/ you hooked on Mobb phonics, Infamous 'bonics."
The term "dunn" supposedly originated in the Queensbridge housing projects with an acquaintance of Prodigy's, Bumpy, whose speech impediment prevented him from pronouncing the letter "S", such as in "son". The impediment encouraged him to put the tongue on the two front teeth/palate, making a 'th' or a 'd' sound. Mobb Deep has attempted to claim ownership of this body of slang; additionally, they were going to release an album called The Dunn Language, in 2002, but the project was shelved, due to label issues.
On September 15, 2018, during an interview for HipHop4Real, Havoc stated that he was working on a new album Mobb Deep, which would be the duo's latest album. He is also working on a joint project Mobb Deep with The Alchemist, announced a few years ago.
In December 2019, Havoc went on a "Murda Muzik 20th Anniversary Tour" with Big Noyd and L.E.S.
The Infamous Mobb Deep is the eighth and final studio album by American hip hop duo Mobb Deep, which is composed of Havoc and Prodigy. The album was released on April 1, 2014, by Prodigy's Infamous Records and Sony's RED Distribution. The Infamous Mobb Deep is a double album that consists of one disc of new original music and another of unreleased tracks from the recording sessions from their second studio album The Infamous (1995). The album has been in development since 2011, but was delayed by a feud that occurred between Havoc and Prodigy during 2012. However, they shortly reconciled.
TaJuan Akeem Perry, better known by his stage name Big Noyd, is an American rapper from Queensbridge, Queens, New York. He is closely affiliated with Mobb Deep, and is featured on all of their albums except Blood Money.
Daniel Alan Maman, professionally known as The Alchemist, is an American musician, record producer, DJ, rapper and songwriter. He began his music career in 1991 in the hip hop duo The Whooliganz under the moniker Mudfoot, along with now-actor Scott Caan. After rising to prominence in the late 1990s, as a close associate of Dilated Peoples and Mobb Deep, he went on to produce for many of hip hop's leading artists in the 2000s, and has been hailed as one of the genre's leading producers. He produces for many artists, most of his recent production is for a close group of frequent collaborative rappers. He focuses on producing entire albums for rappers and instrumental projects of his own. He is currently Eminem's official DJ.
Albert Johnson, better known by his stage name Prodigy, was an American rapper, author, and entrepreneur. With Havoc, he was one half of the hip hop duo Mobb Deep.
Kejuan Waliek Muchita, better known by his stage name Havoc, is an American rapper and record producer. He was one half of the hip-hop duo Mobb Deep with Prodigy.
The Infamous is the second studio album by the American hip hop duo Mobb Deep. It was released on April 25, 1995, by Loud Records. The album features guest appearances by Nas, Raekwon, Ghostface Killah, and Q-Tip, who also contributed to its production and mixing. Most of the leftover songs from the album became bonus tracks for Mobb Deep's The Infamous Mobb Deep album (2014).
Hell on Earth is the third studio album by East Coast hip hop duo Mobb Deep, which was first released on November 19, 1996, on Loud and RCA Records. The album is largely a continuation of Mobb Deep's previous album, the critically acclaimed The Infamous. The album is produced by Mobb Deep and also features guest appearances by emcees Nas, Raekwon, Method Man, and frequent collaborator Big Noyd. The album stands out for its acclaimed singles "G.O.D. Pt. III" and "Hell on Earth ," as well as "Drop a Gem on 'Em," a response to 2Pac's diss track "Hit 'Em Up." A promotional single, "Still Shinin'", was released earlier that year and later added to the album. The album, one of the earliest enhanced CDs, also contains an additional track that at the time, had to be unlocked with the use of a computer.
Murda Muzik is the fourth studio album by Mobb Deep, which was released on August 17, 1999. It features one of the group's best-known tracks, "Quiet Storm." It is also the duo's most commercially successful album to date, for shipping over 1 million copies in the United States and was certified Platinum by the RIAA on October 26, 1999, debuting at #3 on the Billboard 200 charts. Murda Muzik also garnered positive reviews from The Source and Allmusic, among others. A censored version of the album, titled Mobb Muzik, was released simultaneously. Since its release the album has been certified 2x platinum.
Infamy is the fifth studio album by the American hip hop duo Mobb Deep. Infamy was released after Jay-Z dissed Prodigy and Nas on his song "Takeover," from Jay-Z's 2001 album, The Blueprint, which caused Prodigy to strike back on the Track "Crawlin". Infamy has been certified Gold by the RIAA, selling over 800,000 copies in the United States of America. It has been successful critically as well as commercially, getting good scores from The Source and HipHopDX, as well as Allmusic and Rolling Stone magazine.
H.N.I.C. is the debut solo album by American rapper Prodigy. The album was scheduled for a September release but ultimately released November 14, 2000.
"Survival of the Fittest" is a song by American hip hop duo Mobb Deep from their second studio album, The Infamous (1995). It was released as the second single from the aforementioned album on May 29, 1995 by Loud Records. The song was produced by Havoc, using a sample of the 1976 song "Skylark" by The Barry Harris Trio and Al Cohn.
Episodes of a Hustla is the debut album by American rapper Big Noyd, released on December 10, 1996, by Tommy Boy Records. He recorded the album after making his name as a rapper on Mobb Deep's The Infamous and Hell on Earth albums. Most of the album was produced by Mobb Deep's Havoc and features guest appearances by Prodigy. Big Noyd's lyrics use violent, disturbing imagery to boast his rapping skills. Episodes of a Hustla charted at number 59 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums.The album is now out of print.
Infamous Mobb, also known as IM3, is a hip hop group from Queensbridge, Long Island City, Queens, New York, United States, composed of members Ty Nitty, Twin Gambino, Godfather Pt.III, and Ron Gotti. They are an integral part of the Queensbridge Hip Hop scene, which includes rappers like Nas, and Mobb Deep, and began with the Juice Crew.
Life of the Infamous: The Best of Mobb Deep is the greatest hits album from Queensbridge rap duo Mobb Deep. It contains songs dating back to their 1993 debut album, Juvenile Hell, through their 2004 album, Amerikaz Nightmare. No Blood Money songs are on the album since those tracks are owned by Universal Music Group, not Sony Music Entertainment, the label that released this album. The disc includes "Blood Money" and "Go Head," two previously unreleased tracks. "Keep It Thoro" is the only song featured on a non-Mobb Deep album.
"Quiet Storm" is the first single from Mobb Deep's fourth album Murda Muzik. It was originally released on the soundtrack for the film In Too Deep. The song features a sample of the bass line from the classic hip-hop song "White Lines " by Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five and another sample from Smokey Robinson's "A Quiet Storm". In 2001, R&B group 112 used an updated version of the "Quiet Storm" beat for their number-one single, It's Over Now.
The Infamous Archives is an album by Queensbridge hip-hop duo Mobb Deep on March 13, 2007. The album consists of previously unreleased tracks. The first disc contains Mobb Deep's Back from a Hiatus mixtape from 1998. Rappers such as Sticky Fingaz, 50 Cent, Snoop Dogg and Busta Rhymes are featured. The song "In the Long Run", Prodigy spoke about the altercation between him and Keith Murray. In Prodigy's book, he stated this release wasn't authorized by the group.
The discography of Prodigy, an American rapper and one half of the hip hop duo Mobb Deep, consists of 5 studio albums, 3 collaborative albums, 1 EP, 5 mixtapes and 17 singles.
H.N.I.C. 3 is the third studio album by American hip hop recording artist Prodigy of gangsta rap duo Mobb Deep. The album was released on July 3, 2012 under Infamous Records. The album is the third and final installment of Prodigy's H.N.I.C. series. The album features guest appearances from Wiz Khalifa, T.I., Willie Taylor of Day26 and his Mobb Deep cohort Havoc. The album's production was handled by Sid Roams, Beat Butcha, Young L, S.C., Ty Fyffe and T.I., as well as Prodigy's frequent collaborator The Alchemist. H.N.I.C. 3 debuted at #105 on the Billboard 200 chart.
Albert Einstein is the second collaborative studio album by American hip hop recording artist Prodigy of Mobb Deep and American record producer The Alchemist. The album was released on June 11, 2013, by Infamous Records. The album features guest appearances from Roc Marciano, Domo Genesis, The Alchemist, Havoc, Raekwon and Action Bronson.
13 is the third solo studio album by American rapper Havoc, one-half of the hip hop duo Mobb Deep. The album was released on May 7, 2013 by Nature Sounds. The singles "Tell Me to My Face", "Gone" and "Life We Chose" have been released. The album features guest appearances from Styles P, Raekwon, Lloyd Banks, Masspike Miles, Royce da 5'9" and Twista.