Big Pokey, a local icon in the Houston hip-hop industry and a member of Houston’s legendary Screwed Up Click, has away at the age of 45. Big Pokey was a pioneer in the Houston hip-hop culture.
The rapper who was born Milton Powell is said to have passed away after collapsing during his act on Saturday in Beaumont, Texas. The death of Powell was confirmed by the Jefferson County Justice of the Peace.
The publicist for Big Pokey, speaking on behalf of Big Pokey’s family, issued a statement that verified his loss as well. The statement said, “It is with deep sadness that we share the news of the passing of our beloved Milton ‘Big Pokey’ Powell.” Big Pokey was a musician. The 18th of June, 2023 was the day Big Pokey went away. His family, his friends, and especially his devoted followers all had a lot of affection for him. In the following days, we will provide details on the memorial service that will be held in his honor as well as instructions on how members of the public can pay their respects. During this sad time, we ask that you respect his family and their privacy and keep them in your thoughts and prayers. Big Pokey will always have the title of ‘The Hardest Pit in the Litter.'”
Big Pokey was one of the initial members of the Screwed Up Click, which was founded in Houston by DJ Screw, the late pioneer of the chopped-and-screwed method of performing hip-hop in that city. Big Pokey was one of the founding members of the Screwed Up Click. Before launching his own rap career with 1999’s The Hardest Pit in the Litter, Big Pokey was a guest on several of DJ Screw’s early albums. Big Pokey’s career in the rap industry began in 1999.
After hearing the news of Big Pokey’s passing, fellow Houston icon and Screwed Up partner Bun B posted the following message on Instagram: “I wasn’t ready for this. One of the city’s most gifted painters in terms of their innate ability. He was a quiet, unassuming mountain of a guy who carried himself with honor and respect. He was very likable and challenging to dislike at the same time. He would pull over, complete what he needed to, and then drive back home. One of the essential components that make up our metropolis. If only there existed a person with a heart of gold. Member par excellence of the SUC. There will never be another one like it again, and we shall miss it terribly. You are held in the highest esteem, Sensei. Rest in paradise.”
In addition, Bun B urged his audience to “get on all the streaming platforms and make this the number one album in the country today”. Let us convey to his family the message that we cherished our time spent with him! I bid you adieu, Big Pokey!
Big Pokey was featured on Paul Wall’s smash song “Sittin’ Sidewayz,” which was released in 2005. Paul Wall tweeted, “Rest in peace, Big Pokey.”