American rapper, Prodigy, aged 42, who together with Havoc (Kejuan Muchita) made up the hip-hop duo Mobb Deep, died Tuesday of unknown causes. He was found unconscious.
He was in Las Vegas for the “Art of Rap” tour alongside the likes of Ghostface Killah, Onyx, KRS-One, and Ice-T. Mobb Deep had already performed on Saturday when Prodigy had to be hospitalized for complications arising out of sickle cell anemia, a disease which Prodigy had been carrying since birth.
Considering his history of sickle cell anemia and his hospitalization recently from complications from it, the cause of death, in all probability, is related to the disease. However, the exact cause of death has still not been determined and one can, at best, speculate.
Here’s a statement released by Mobb Deep’s publicist to the music website XXL following Prodigy’s death:
“It is with extreme sadness and disbelief that we confirm the death of our dear friend Albert Johnson, better known to millions of fans as Prodigy of legendary NY rap duo Mobb Deep. Prodigy was hospitalized a few days ago in Vegas after a Mobb Deep performance for complications caused by a sickle cell anemia crisis. As most of his fans know, Prodigy battled the disease since birth. The exact causes of death have yet to be determined. We would like to thank everyone for respecting the family’s privacy at this time.”
Tributes from fans and fellow artists kept pouring in following the news of the rapper’s untimely death.
RIP PRODIGY ?? . HIP HOP LOST ANOTHER LEGEND
— LORD FLACKO JODYE II (@asvpxrocky) June 20, 2017
rest in power prodigy
— thebe kgositsile (@earlxsweat) June 20, 2017
Damn. RiP to the great one Prodigy. Rap game lost a legend the world lost a G. ?? to and for his fam. Love. MOBB
— Lil Wayne WEEZY F (@LilTunechi) June 20, 2017
R.I.P. to the man with the most fitting name in the art…cause he was one. Prodigy gave us some of the illest most meaningful lines ever
— Ka (@BrownsvilleKa) June 20, 2017
Rip prodigy. God bless his family and all his fans. Mobb forever.
— Wiz Khalifa (@wizkhalifa) June 20, 2017
Prodigy, whose real name was Albert Johnson, was born in Hempstead, New York, on November 2, 1974.
Hailing from a family of musicians, it was but natural for Prodigy to take up music as the profession of his choice. Starting his career as a 16-year-old, he joined “Jive” under the alias Lord-T and managed to land an uncredited guest appearance on the Boyz N The Hood soundtrack by Hi-Five in 1991.
He met Havoc (Kejuan Muchita ) in high school and together they formed the duo “Poetical Prophets” before changing the name to “Mobb Deep” which went on to become one of the top rap duos of hip-hop, selling over 3 million records. Mobb Deep’s net worth was estimated at $10 million.
Their album, The Infamous (1995), became the duo’s first real success propelling them to the top of their game. The single “Shook Ones Pt. II” from this album, which was a remix of the hit Shook Ones, became an instant success and received much critical acclaim.
Hell on Earth from 1996, debuting at number six on the Billboard Album Chart, was another album by Mobb Deep to have received critical success.
Here is a list of the studio albums released by the Havoc-Prodigy duo, Mobb Deep
Juvenile Hell (1993)
The Infamous (1995
Hell on Earth (1996)
Murda Muzik (1999)
Amerikaz Nightmare (2004)
Blood Money (2006)
The Infamous Mobb Deep (2014)
Prodigy will be sorely missed by fans and fellow hip-hop artists alike – it will be “Hell on Earth” for his many fans from around the world, now that he’s gone.
R.I.P. “The Infamous” one!