Mobb Deep’s 4th & B’way debut, 1993’s Juvenile Hell, spawned the single “Peer Pressure,” a now classic cut produced by DJ Premier. In light of Prodigy’s sudden passing earlier this week, Preemo has dusted off another vintage Mobb Deep offering, “Cop Hell,” which was the B-side to Gang Starr’s 1992 single, “Doe In Advance.”
While it was widely bootlegged, the song was never given an official standalone release. The track was evidently axed from the Juvenile Hell record because of the controversy surrounding Ice-T’s brutal “Cop Killer” single that was released the year prior.
Kookie Gonzalez, who was working at 4th & B’way at the time, explains it was also a matter of money.
“Mobb Deep’s budget for the LP was running extremely low,” Gonzalez tells HipHopDX. “Since we knew that Premier really liked them, we wanted to see what he could do for us. Preemo said he would do the remix to ‘Peer Pressure’ along with a whole new track — ‘Cop Hell.’ Once everything was mastered, we found out our distributors didn’t want us to release it because of a previous single that Ice-T put out called ‘Cop Killer,’ so ‘Cop Hell’ didn’t make the album, and Premier ended up putting it out as a white label.”
Twenty five years later, Preemo apparently decided the time was right to let “Cop Hell” shine. He accompanied the SoundCloud link with a description that read:
“THIS SONG WAS PULLED FROM THE “JUVENILE HELL” LP AFTER THE WHOLE ICE-T ‘COP KILLER’ SONG WAS SHOCKING THE WORLD; SO MOBB DEEP’s LABEL 4TH & B’WAY REMOVED IT AS WELL…
SOME COPIES LEAKED, BUT MOST DJ’s DON’T HAVE IT. ME, PRODIGY AND HAVOC GOT PULLED OVER BY THE COPS IN 1993 AND THEY WERE ON SOME FOUL SHIT, BUT WE WERE ABLE TO GET AWAY WITHOUT THEM FINDING OUT HOW DIRTY THE CAR WAS BACK THEN…
SO WE WROTE THIS SONG ABOUT IT…HERE IT IS UNCUT…WE ARE GONNA MISS YOU PRODIGY…(R.I.P.). CONDOLENCES TO HIS FAMILY…”
Preemo, who is currently pushing his new collaborative album with MC Eiht, Which Way Iz West, has also been posting throwback photos to his Instagram account over the last week commemorating his decades-long friendship with the late Mobb Deep MC.
Check out the posts below and listen to “Cop Hell” above.