Murder of 20 Year Old Rapper Pop Smoke Sparks Referencing of Juice WRLD Lyrics

Posted by Billyjam, February 19, 2020 09:46pm | Post a Comment
Pop Smoke "Welcome To The Party" (2019)

Bashar Barakah Jackson, AKA young new generation hip-hop star Pop Smoke who was signed to Republic Records,  was killed early this morning in his LA home.  The 20 year old Brooklyn, NY born drill rapper, who blew up last summer with the song "Welcome to the Party,” was shot and killed by two masked suspects in an apparent home invasion robbery of his home in the Hollywood Hills.  After the 4:30am shooting today Jackson was rushed to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center where he was pronounced dead upon arrival.

In his all too brief lifetime Pop Smoke won not only the attention of rap fans but such peers as Nicki Minaj, who did a popular remix of  “Welcome To The Party,” and Travis Scott who collaborated with him on the song “Gatti.” That song was found on last year’s seven-track  #1 Billboard 200 label compilation project JACKBOYS that Scott made with his Cactus Jack labelmates Sheck Wes and Don Toliver.  Earlier today Scott,  in joining the the myriad of other shocked hip-hop artists such as Chance The Rapper sharing condolences online, posted to Instagram a brief video clip with an audio snippet of a (so far) unreleased Pop Smoke collaboration. 

Despite being very well known by a large albeit somewhat limited audience [EG; the music video for “Welcome To The Party” above has garnered 25+ million views since last June] to the average music fan it seemed that it was only with today’s tragic news headlines that they first learned of this  “upcoming” “rising” rap star as he has been described by most news outlets.  However many of both those music fans already familiar with Pop Smoke and those only now just learning of the artist have been referencing the oft cited 2018 song lyrics by Juice WRLD that addressed dying by the young age of 21. 

The late Juice WRLD famously rapped on his track “Legends”  off the 2018 EP Too Soon... that he made in honor of rappers who had recently died at that time,  “What's the 27 Club? We ain't making it past 21.”  Not surprisingly when the 21 year old Chicago born artist himself tragically died the following year in December 2019, the result of a narcotics induced seizure, many fans cited the song’s lyrics speculating that he had eerily predicted his own death in the song. Then today on social media, following the news of the tragic death of Pop Smoke (just five months before his 21st birthday) those Juice WRLD’s lyrics are being widely cross-referenced once again. 

In addition to Juice WRLD and Pop Smoke among other young rap artists to have died before or by age 21 over the past few years include 20 year old XXXTentacion who was murdered in June 2018,  21 year old Jimmy Wopo who was the fatal victim of a driveby in June 2018 and 21 year old Lil Peep who died of a Xanax overdose in November 2017.  All of these artists are gone too soon and, as Chance The Rapper tweeted today regarding Pop Smoke, gone “too young."

JACKBOYS Pop Smoke, Travis Scott  "GATTI" (2019)

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Pop Smoke (1), Lil Peep (5), Xxxtentacion (4), Jimmy Wopo (1), Juice Wrld (1)