Prodigy (born Albert Johnson), one half hip-hop group Mobb Deep, recently released his autobiography, My Infamous Life, that he co-wrote with hip-hop journalist Laura Checkoway. He talked with rolling out about working on the book as well as clearing up some issues with previous rap feuds. —kadeem lundy
Why did you feel that now was the right time to release your autobiography?
I’ve been working on it since 2004. When I was finished, that was basically when it was the time to put it out. I’ve always wanted to do a book on our story, on our family history and on the Mobb Deep’s story. A lot of speculation and misconceptions [are] going around. It’s only fair for people to know the real deal.
Have you resolved the anger toward Havoc for not visiting you often while you were prison.
When you’re in prison, everything stops. When it took a while for Hav to come around, I was upset at first, but then I understood. I was like, “Wait a minute. I put myself in here.” Hav … I know he love me, he love Mobb Deep and everything that we do. He was out there dealing with the world sh*t, while I’m here concentrating on everything so much. It forces you to become upset at certain people, but you can’t have that kind of attitude.
I mean, I’ve always respected Jay-Z and the music that he makes. Our little situation was more personal. It wasn’t about his music. We had seen him in Justin’s that day, and it could have been a problem. But he came up, and we spoke about it, and he said, “… Let’s not start no drama. Let’s keep it just music.” We respect and love Jay-Z and everything that he does from then to now. He’s one of the greatest.
Have you made amends with Nas?
I looked up to him from day one when they first accepted me and brought me in around their world [and] to their projects up there in Queensbridge. We went through our little thing because of certain people who were around us that didn’t mix. That put trouble in our relationship, but, since I’ve been home, we decided to keep it moving.
What do you want readers to ultimately get from reading My Infamous Life?
It’s about standing the test of time and sticking together in a relationship. There [are] going to be struggles and problems. But it’s real important that the love is really there [so you can] overcome all the bullsh–.