The Alchemist Tells All: The Stories Behind His Classic Records (Part 1)

Mobb Deep "The Realest" (1999)

Album: Murda Muzik
Label: SME, Columbia, Loud

The Alchemist: “I had just come off a tour with Cypress Hill. I was hanging with DJ Muggs on the tour helping out and rolling with him. Freddie Foxx, Gangstar, and M.O.P were on the tour as well. I remember linking with Foxx on the tour.

“Freddie would come to the back of the bus and hear my beats as I was making beats in the back of the bus. He’d be like, ‘Yo is Cypress using these? When we get home I'm fucking with you.’ It meant a lot [coming from him], Freddie Fox was definitely one of the first people who said I had some shit.

“So we came home after the tour and there was a Freddie Foxx joint I was supposed to do the next morning with him. I went to sleep early that night and Prodigy called me. I had just met Mobb Deep around that time. I kept going over to Soundtrack to play beats for them.

 

I’d never seen them together. It’d be like Havoc would be there, but not P. A couple days later, there’d be P but no Havoc. It’s funny because I’d go see Havoc and he’d be like, ‘Yo I like this one’ and it’d be the beat to ‘The Realest.’ Then I'd go see P and he'd be like, ‘I like this one,’ and I'd say, ‘Oh yeah Havoc liked the same one.’

 

“I’d never seen them together. It’d be like Havoc would be there, but not P. A couple days later, there’d be P but no Havoc. It’s funny because I’d go see Havoc and he’d be like, ‘Yo I like this one’ and it’d be the beat to ‘The Realest.’ Then I'd go see P and he'd be like, ‘I like this one,’ and I'd say, ‘Oh yeah Havoc liked the same one.’ But then nothing happened from there.

“Then P just called me that night and said, ‘Yo, remember that beat, come to the studio we wanna lay that beat down.’ I was like, ‘Bet.’ I literally threw my ASR in the fucking case and got a cab and went to the studio and when I got there, G Rap was sitting there.

“I didn’t even know and I was like, ‘Wow! He's like my favorite rapper.’ The minute I walked in with the keyboard P was like, ‘Yo we want to use that beat for the album’ and I was like, ‘Where’s the engineer? Plug in the keyboard lets go!’

“I was supposed to call my manager and be like, ‘Hold on lets get the business right’ but I just went for it. Laid the beat down, G Rap wrote that shit in 45 minutes. The minute he heard the beat he was just gone like, ‘Lemme go in,’ and he laid that shit down. Everybody was just astounded, removing organs, I couldn’t even recite it right now.

“It took time [to build a relationship with Mobb Deep]. They’re not the type of crew who would take to new people, I saw that right away. So I really got [cool with] Infamous Mobb. Muggs hooked me up with them first. They took to me and it was gradual, it wasn’t some instant, ‘We’re fucking with you!’ I kept at it and the sound fit to where it just clicked.”

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