Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Me and Mobb Deep

as a freshman, i can remember sitting in the "seniors only" section of the school cafeteria, shooting the shit with the boys about this rap group that was driving us all crazy. they were the hardest thing out at the time and all of us being young and stupid and from a small florida town, they glorified a lifestyle unlike anything we saw in panama city. and truth be told, a lifestyle that im sure most of these idiots friends of mine would have loved to emulate.

this rap group, my friends, is Mobb Deep. the album we were speaking of at the time was The Infamous.

and i have to be honest. when i first saw the Shook Ones video, i thought these cats were the corniest thing ever. "yeah, nice hennessy shirt. get a fucking life. dick." but after a few more listens, i was hooked on their trife life. that was 16 years ago and ive purchased ever album since. wait, let me reiterate that: ive PURCHASED every album since. i think the only physical disk that i dont currently have in my possession is Murda Muzik and thats only because some asshole stole it out of my car.

fast forward to present day. Prodigy has been released from jail after doing a three year bid and sends the rap world and all of the internet ablaze with his return. i, of course, am not mad at all about this. after being out just one month, he is releasing an autobiography, My Infamous Life. if you can appreciate nothing else about the times we live in, you must at least be grateful of the efficiency in which things are now accomplished. one month and book theres already a book release? *head spins*

and tonight, i was at Prodigy's book signing.

at the Powerhouse Arena bookstore in DUMBO, about 100 of us gathered to hear "the Quiet Storm n*gga who fight rhymes" touch on some of the topics he covered in his book. from beef with Jay-Z to hook-ups with Lil Kim to his partner Havoc shooting a Def Jam A&R on accident, this dude laid it all out. ill post a link below that goes more in depth about these subjects.

but as Prodigy walked in, all 5'6 of him dressed in an extra smedium button up and jail house muscles noticeably protruding from the sleeves, the 14 year old me was mentally losing it inside my head. this was just one of those times that i had to take a step back and question, "ME? IM here right now? how did this happen???" all of these memories of skipping class, late night rides to the beach, drinking quarts pretending they were 40s (they didnt sell 40s in panama city), smoking blunts and just generally being a teenage asshole came flooding back to me, a nostalgia whose vividness can only be assigned to those reflections of adolescence. because, really, are there any better times to remember than those of when youre young and carefree? but this deluge all happened because all of these things that i/we did were set to the soundtrack of Mobb Deep.

sixteen years ago, as a young and angsty high schooler, i would have never thought something like tonight would happen. sixteen years ago, i truly fell in love with rap music. sixteen years ago, i made the decision that i was moving to new york.

and i hope wherever they are, Antoine, Daryl, LaDerrick, Wyman, Jermaine, Christian, Chance, Jeremiah and the rest of the boys felt the pang of a fantasy realized. because even though i went alone, i still brought them there with me in spirit.

if youd like to read more about Prodigy's book, you can check out

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