West Coast icon Ice-T recently paid homage to his “favourite MC”, the late Mobb Deep rapper Prodigy, by posting their last photo together. The LA musician has posted this ahead of what would have been the Mobb Deep rapper’s 49th birthday.
Taking to Instagram, Ice-T posted the photo writing, “Pic of me and @PRODIGYMOBBDEEP. I’ve said many times that he was my Favourite MC/Rapper.. This was at a concert we rocked in Vegas.. He passed away that same night.. [broken heart emoji] Life is fragile and precious. Appreciate every min.”
The two were on the 2017 Art of Rap Tour in Las Vegas alongside Ghostface Killah, Onyx, and KRS-One. Ice-T himself organised the tour. The pair performed in the extreme Nevada heat, but following their appearance, Prodigy (real name Albert Johnson) was hospitalised and swiftly pronounced dead.
At the time, Johnson’s team released a statement reading, “It is with extreme sadness and disbelief that we confirm the death of our dear friend Albert Johnson, better known to millions of fans as Prodigy of legendary NY rap duo Mobb Deep.”
It continued, “Prodigy was hospitalised a few days ago in Vegas after a Mobb Deep performance for complications caused by a sickle cell anaemia crisis. As most of his fans know, Prodigy battled the disease since birth. The exact causes of death have yet to be determined. We would like to thank everyone for respecting the family’s privacy at this time.”
A local medical examiner who analysed Johnson’s body following his death controversially revealed that, despite the statement released, Prodigy didn’t die from sickle cell anaemia but instead from accidental choking. However, his sickle cell condition was exacerbated by the heat.
The whole of hip-hop mourned his death in 2017, and, as well as his fellow Mobb Deep member Havoc, LL Cool J, Ice-T, 50 Cent, Questlove, Remy Ma, Fat Joe and many more attended his funeral in New York.