Produced by: The Alchemist
Prodigy: “I was working on H.N.I.C. 2 and I decided to put a mixtape out to promote my album because I ain’t had an album out in a long time. I was like, ‘I can’t just drop an album or drop a single. I’ve got to start building up, let [the new fans] know I’m a solo artist.’ I wanted it to be called Return of The Mac because it’s a play on words. I’m not talking about mack like a pimp, I was talking about the gun. Like somebody’s coming back for revenge.
“The first the song that I did was ‘Mac 10 Handle’ and that was about a dude that’s plotting on his enemies and his haters, but they don’t even know. They’re running around thinking shit is sweet, but this nigga is in the crib, straight plotting. The whole concept of that CD was a lot of blaxploitation film music, that ‘70s sound like Hell Up In Harlem, Black Caesar. We just wanted to give it that feel because it matched the title. Alchemist ran with that. He recorded the beat, I recorded ‘Mac 10 Handle’ in his crib, and then I was like, ‘We’ve got to shoot a video for this.’
“Before we even put the song out—we shot a video for it and put it on YouTube. That shit had like 400,000 views in two days. That was the first time somebody put a video out before the song came out and shot a professional video for a mix CD. After that, you seen mad people started doing it. I created the concept, Dan The Man shot the video for me, and he just ran with it. I told him I wanted to make it like some psychotic, Rob Zombie shit. I knew that would create the buzz needed on the Internet. I see all these other companies, rap labels, and rappers going in one direction, so I decided to go in the opposite direction.
“The plan was to give it to DJ Whoo Kid for free, just as a regular G-Unit mix CD. G-Unit Radio Part 27, or Part 85, or whatever the fuck it was. But then the hype from the video was so tremendous, I started getting phone calls from labels who were offering money. They were like, ‘Yo, what is this that you’re doing? You got an album coming out?’ I was like, ‘No, it’s a mixtape.’ They were like, ‘We want to buy it off you. We want to put that out.’ I was getting crazy offers.
“Bob Perry—who I was dealing with off and on—gave me $200,000 for something I was about to put out for free. When he gave me that bread, of course they’re going to try and treat it like an album because they’re trying to make money off the shit. But in reality, everybody knows my albums is H.N.I.C., that’s it. I only do H.N.I.C. albums.