Prodigy of Mobb Deep Drank More Than a Swimming Pool’s Worth of Hennessy In the ’90s


Editor’s note: In “Tweets Is Watching,” Phillip Mlynar asks local artists questions based solely on the contents of their Twitter timeline.

“The Albert Einstein album sounds like the future of hardcore music,” says Mobb Deep rapper Prodigy about his collaborative full-length project with the producer Alchemist that drops this week. (You can check out teasers from Albert Einstein over at P’s Soundcloud page.) While you line those snippets up, read on to check out his Twitter talk about admiring the Odd Future kids, supping a swimming pool’s worth of Hennessy back in the ’90s, and why Einstein might have been a criminal genius.

See also: Havoc of Mobb Deep: “Donald Trump is Like a Biggie to Me!”

You dropped the video to “Y.N.T. (Young and Thuggin’)” with Domo Genesis. How did you hook up with him?
We’ve been in the studio a lot recording, we did a bunch of songs over at Alchemist’s crib. That one ended up on the album and another one came out on Domo’s mixtape. We got a couple more unreleased.

What did you think the first time you heard Odd Future’s music?
Ah, man, I loved it! Soon as I came home from jail the first video I saw was Earl Sweatshirt where he’s mixing up the drugs in the blender. I thought these little dudes was geniuses.

You posted up a picture backstage at Alabama. What’s the worst backstage set-up you’ve ever experienced?
Man, there’s a lot of holes-in-the-walls in our career! Man, they’re terrible, very bad, sometimes there is no backstage area and you just gotta stand behind a curtain. We’ve been to all levels of venues from stadiums down, so we’ve seen every spectrum of backstage.

What’s the Prodigy backstage routine?
Just a lot of water really, to keep myself hydrated. ‘Cause when I perform a show I tend to start sweating a lot so I want to have a lot of energy and make sure the crowd is into it. Nothing real crazy backstage. I just want to make sure I be killing shit and giving 8,000% at the show.

I take it you’re a fan of Troy Ave?
Yeah, Troy Ave, I like his style, he got his own little style and his voice is unique. He’s a unique individual to me, a young rapper from Brooklyn. He’s another rapper that when I came home I hooked up with him, I was introduced through some of my peoples in Crown Heights, and we made that joint “Dirty Martini.” Me and him just be chilling.

Are there gonna be any more collaborations between you and Troy Ave any time soon?
Yeah, I was just at his crib recording something a month ago. It hasn’t come out yet.

Which other up-and-coming New York rappers are you a fan of?
Ah, man, I like the little A$AP Mob. That’s my homie right there, A$AP Yams, we hang out a lot. I like what they’re doing. I like Rocky, you know, and I like Ferg, he’s dope. I really like his music. I like what they brought to the industry with the whole fashion thing and the throwback ’90s thing with the Coogis. They show a lot of love to the ’90s.

When someone says the ’90s, what’s the first thing you remember?
The first thing I remember about the ’90s, man, is a lot of E&J, a lot of Hennessy, St. Ides 40 ounces, Timberlands and army fatigue suits.

How many bottles of Hennessy do you think you drank in the ’90s?
Damn! Way more than a swimming pool! Kendrick Lamar got that song, but I drank way more than a swimming pool.

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There’s a picture of you reading an Einstein’s magazine.
Yeah, you know I got the project Albert Einstein so I was just doing my little Einstein research. I like to read up on Einstein and his background and how he became who he is and stuff like that. I like to do a lot of research into the origin of things. I like to learn how he started and how he became famous and where he received his information from.

What was the most inspiring thing you found out about Einstein?
It was that he probably wasn’t the great genius per se that everybody thinks he might be–he might be more of a thief! Einstein worked at the patent office for about ten years after he dropped out of high school. His job at the patent office was to go through the patents for all these inventions and all these ideas that people were submitting then all of a sudden, after ten years of working at the patent office and with no high-school diploma and no college, he came up with those theories and equations. Is that a coincidence or what? When I learned that about Einstein, that made him more interesting to me, like it made him a genius in another way, a criminal genius.

What’s your favorite thing that Einstein may or may not have invented then?
Probably the whole relativity thing. Just a lot of the theories he came up with. I can’t really pinpoint one, but if I had to say something it would be the theory of relativity.

Have you ever had any ideas for inventions yourself?
I would say maybe lyrically, yeah. I had a bunch of inventions lyrically that I don’t have the actual patent on, but yeah, if you do the history Prodigy invented that.

Who stole the patents?
Ah, man, a few people! I ain’t gonna name no names though. It’s no big deal.

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This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on June 12, 2013

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