Albert Johnson. @prodigymobbdeep. I'd been dealing with some things when he passed, but even if things had been going swimmingly for me at the time, I still would have been deeply affected.
I was blessed with an opportunity to meet the god and shake hands at a meet & greet at UMass Amherst in the spring of 2002. It was also my first time meeting not only someone famous, but someone I greatly respected and admired. He'd just done a feature on Jinusean's third album the year before that, making him one of the first two emcees to legitimize Korean Hip-Hop with a co-sign (Chino XL also contributed a verse to that record). As he was signing my poster, I told him that I'd heard that shit he did out in Korea. He smiled, leaned back, and said, "Yeah, that shit was ill, huh?" I told him, "YOUR verse was ill, that shit was kinda wack tho," and he laughed. As I filed out of the room, I asked one of the BSU members how they got MOBB to come through for this signing, as they weren't even performing in the area. He told me that they'd just asked them to stop by on their way to a show in CT to do this, and they agreed. That's how fucking trill Mobb Deep is.
Since then, through signing with Jive, G-Unit, falling out with @mobbdeephavoc, squashing that beef, man, MOBB was a mainstay; you almost took em for granted. I think that's why they flirted with mainstream success, but largely remain criminally underrated outside of real heads who respect the name. I mean, these guys was the hardest duo this side of MOP, but the biggest record they had was a party record (Got it Twisted), nahh mean?? I was blessed again just last year, when I was lucky enough to be back home in Boston for PAX East, and able to catch MOBB at the Middle East Downstairs for the Hell on Earth 20th Anniversary tour in the company of dear friends @agonz27, @zeromyst, and my brother from another mother who dun fuck with no social media bc he on that sad dad life, Mike. They killed it. Obviously. OBVIOUSLY. OBVIOUSLY BOSTON GOT LIVE AS FUCK FOR M-O-B-B. After the encore, P and Havoc came back out on stage and signed autographs for a good grip. Once again, that trill.
One love, P. Thanks for everything. RIP.