Earlier this week, the New York Times published a lengthy profile detailing the final months of Brooklyn rapper Pop Smoke’s life. The piece includes quotes from Quavo, Skepta, and more.
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Jon Caramanica, the author of the profiles, begins in October 2019. Smoke is preparing for a role in Eddie Huang’s directorial debut, Boogie. Huang describes the rapper’s first appearance on set saying, “Pop shows up to the audition — Palm Angels head to toe — and he’s just a kid, but he has the voice of 50 Cent and Paul Mooney. You can tell he’s weathered, he’s an old soul. Within two takes, you could see the swag just come out of nowhere. He explodes on camera. I stopped the audition right there. He can turn emotions on a dime. He could be funny. He can be mean. A lot of actors just don’t have the depth of emotion and experiences, but because of what Pop’s gone through, he has a tremendous well to draw from.”
A clip from Smoke’s auction surfaced online earlier this week.
“He was new, but I felt like I was talking to somebody that had been in the game for three years already,” Quavo said of Pop Smoke. “When I see somebody like that, I feel like I need to share my information, you know? So I told Steven, ‘Hey, imma big bro him. I’m going to put him down on the dos and don’ts.’”
The profile jumps ahead to January and February 2020, when Smoke was “locked in a studio in the Bahamas,” working on his next project, Meet the Woo 2. “He would take the records that he really liked, R&B records, rewrite the lyrics, and then use that as a template for how he’s actually singing it, but he would do it with Auto-Tune,” 50 Cent said.
Check out the full profile here.