rodigy was born on November 2, 1974, in Hempstead, New York. He had one elder brother, Greg Johnson. He came from a musical family. His grandfather Budd Johnson was a saxophonist, and his grand-uncle, Keg Johnson, was a trombonist. Both of them are remembered for their contributions to the Bebop era of jazz. His mother, Fatima Frances (Collins) Johnson, was a member of The Crystals. His father, Budd Johnson Jr., was a member of a Doo wop music group called The Chanters. His great-great-great-grandfather, William Jefferson White, founded Georgia’s Morehouse College.
Prodigy grew up in LeFrak City. While attending the High School of Art and Design in Manhattan, he met his future music partner, Havoc. The duo became the “Poetical Prophets”, before choosing the name “The Infamous Mobb Deep”. Under the alias Lord-T (The Golden Child), the then 16-year-old Johnson joined Jive Records and landed an uncredited guest appearance on the Boyz N The Hood soundtrack, for his collaborative efforts on the song “Too Young” by Hi-Five in 1991.