Prodigy and Havoc, known to the rap world as The Infamous Mobb Deep, were the first honorary guests and performers during Red Bull Music Academy’s “Five For Five” discussion and concert series in New York this week. The Studio at Webster Hall served as the backdrop for Mobb Deep’s detailed discussion and breakdown of their classic 1995 album, The Infamous, as well as for a performance that included a number of the album’s songs along with a few of their other Hip-Hop classics.
The discussion, which was moderated by Ego-Trip co-founder Sacha Jenkins, found the Mobb offering track by track details from The Infamous, stories about their past, the language they speak, and much, much more. One of the most intriguing topics of discussion was the number of groups, including one in particular, that hailed from parts of New York and may have followed in Mobb Deep’s footsteps:
Prodigy and Havoc share the secret of how “Eye For A Eye” came together, from their initial meeting with Raekwon in Staten Island, to their recruitment of Nas for the track:
The eighth song from The Infamous, “Up North Trip,” produced by Havoc and featuring samples from The Fatback Band’s “To Be With You” and The Spinners’ “I’m Tired of Giving” also lent a great deal to the discussion:
The discussion then turned to stories and breakdowns on both “Trife Life” and the beloved “Shook Ones Pt. II”:
Host Sacha finished up the talk by asking the duo where they think they would have ended up had The Infamous not taken off and propelled them into the upper Hip-Hop echelon. Prodigy’s answer, in particular, is both interesting and surprising:
Before Mobb Deep touched the stage, fellow Queens artist Lloyd Banks opened, performing his debut album, The Hunger For More, as well as a few of his more notable mixtape songs and singles:
The grand finale was a high-energy set by The Infamous Mobb Deep:
Red Bull Music Academy Five Boroughs tribute includes performers such as Wu-Tang in Staten Island, Black Moon performing in Brooklyn, and a concert by The Diplomats in Manhattan.
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