My Infamous Life: The Autobiography of Mobb Deep's Prodigy

My Infamous Life: The Autobiography of Mobb Deep's Prodigy

by Albert "Prodigy" Johnson, Laura Checkoway (With)

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Overview

From one of the greatest rappers of all time, the memoir of a life cut short, a revealing look at the dark side of hip hop’s Golden Era...

In this often violent but always introspective memoir, Mobb Deep’s Prodigy tells his much anticipated story of struggle, survival, and hope down the mean streets of New York City. For the first time, he gives an intimate look at his family background, his battles with drugs, his life of crime, his relentless suffering with sickle-cell anemia, and much more. Recently released after serving three and a half years in state prison due to what many consider an unlawful arrest by a rumored secret NYPD hip hop task force, Prodigy is ready to talk about his life as one of rap’s greatest legends.

My Infamous Life is an unblinking account of Prodigy’s wild times with Mobb Deep who, alongside rappers like Nas, The Notorious B.I.G., Tupac Shakur, Jay-Z, and Wu-Tang Clan, changed the musical landscape with their vivid portrayals of early ’90s street life. It is a firsthand chronicle of legendary rap feuds like the East Coast–West Coast rivalry; Prodigy’s beefs with Jay-Z, Nas, Snoop Dogg, Ja Rule, and Capone-N-Noreaga; and run-ins with prodigal hit makers and managers like Puff Daddy, Russell Simmons, Chris Lighty, Irv Gotti, and Lyor Cohen.

Taking the reader behind the smoke-and-mirrors glamour of the hip hop world, so often seen as the only way out for those with few options, Prodigy lays down the truth about the intoxicating power of money, the meaning of true friendship and loyalty, and the ultimately redemptive power of self. This is the heartbreaking journey of a child born in privilege, his youth spent among music royalty like Diana Ross and Dizzy Gillespie, educated in private schools, until a family tragedy changed everything. Raised in the mayhem of the Queensbridge projects, Prodigy rose to the dizzying heights of fame and eventually fell into the darkness of a prison cell.

A truly candid memoir, part fearless confessional and part ode to the concrete jungles of New York City, from the front line of the last great moment in hip hop history.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781439103197
Publisher: Touchstone
Publication date: 02/07/2012
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 71,297
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Albert “Prodigy” Johnson was one half of the platinum selling hip-hop duo, Mobb Deep. Widely considered one of the most skilled lyricists in the history of hard-core East Coast rap, Prodigy lost a life-long battle with sickle cell anemia in 2017.

Table of Contents

Introduction ix

Chapter 1 Genesis 1

Chapter 2 Poetical Prophets 35

Chapter 3 Mobb Deep 51

Chapter 4 Juvenile Hell 63

Chapter 5 The Infamous 79

Chapter 6 Hell on Earth 95

Chapter 7 Murda Muzik 131

Chapter 8 H.N.I.C. 155

Chapter 9 Infamy 189

Chapter 10 Free Agents 197

Chapter 11 Amerikaz Nightmare 203

Chapter 11 Blood Money 239

Chapter 13 Return of the Mac 273

Acknowledgments 305

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

“The legendary rapper unsentimentally details a life of beefs, brawls and murders during the heyday of East Coast hip-hop.” –The Washington Post

“A surprising triumph, both as an archive of 1990s New York hip-hop folk tales and for its stirring sketches of a man who, on many occasions, could have made his life a lot easier on himself … This is the kind of vulnerability that is fearless, especially within hip-hop.” –Slate.com

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My Infamous Life 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 36 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is amazing. I cannot put it down. It's like a drug. Reading Prodigy's stories will make your jaw drop. He is real and has seen and done it all. This book will also give you good insight into other artist's such as Jay Z, Tupac, and Nas. It is a must have for any hip hop fan. Definitely worth the money.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
So many stories, so many stories, so many stories. A in depth perspective of a hip-hop legend on growing up in poverty, living with illness, the early rap days, the music industry, Hip Hop Cops, ect. Highly entertaining, honest. Shows the vulnerabilities that many hip hop artists shy away from and gives many first hand inside perspective on many hip hop legends including Nas, Jay-Z, 50 Cent, CNN, Alchemist, G-Unit ect. A must read for hip hop fans.
harstan More than 1 year ago
This is an insightful autobiography that hooks the audience from the Introduction as Prodigy in a prison four hours from the city realizes he is just another inmate though a celebrity. From there Prodigy explains his family roots changed from musical affluence to the Queensborough projects where violent crime is the norm. For instance, Prodigy, who suffers from Sickle Cell Anemia, admits he committed a robbery to insure he met the code of high school which reminded me of the 1950s Blackboard Jungle by Evan Hunter. His family also knew crime first hand when his aunt a bartender was shot in Queens. When he became a famous rapper, blood money and drugs eventually led to prison. There he found out who his true friends are. This is a timely fabulous memoir as Albert Johnson pulls no punches with his insightful look at his "infamous life" and at the civil war era of Hip Hop. Profound throughout Mr. Johnson lays bare his guts of thriving and dying in the concrete jungle of New York. Although too frequent use of the first person "I" pronoun at the start of sentences (even for an autobiography) feels a bit disjointing, readers will appreciate the honesty that Mr. Johnson provides in this deep gripping introspective memoir. Harriet Klausner
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The book is fantastic. The stories the trials and tribulations. You really get a sense of life growing up in NYC and also working in the msuic industrY. Certainly a page turner once you start you wont be able to put down. Would Highly Recommend. You can relate to some stories but the in debth descriptions do nothing but help him paint the picture for us he is trying to paint. And boy was it a great painting
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Couldn't stop reading.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It’s crazy how son lived a life similar to mines minus the fame and all that, I don’t have sickle cell but do have epilepsy so coming from being limited I understood P. I really wanted to read more, this the best autobiography I’ve read so far. One love.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love Prodigy. He died when I was in the middle of this book. RIP. Mobb Deep forever
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great hip hop stories of hip hop
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great autobiography. R.I.P Prodigy.
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Surprisingly good.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A whole lot of truth and a great read for hip hop fans.
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