Houston rap legend Big Pokey dead at 45 after collapsing on stage

On a Saturday evening, during a live performance at a bar in Beaumont, the renowned Houston rapper Big Pokey tragically passed away after unexpectedly collapsing. He was only 45 years old.

Big Pokey can be observed struggling for breath into the microphone in the middle of his rap performance at the Pour 09 Bar, as depicted in the dramatic footage captured during the concert.

He then collapses onto his back as astonished spectators watched.

Paramedics hurried to the platform and conducted cardiopulmonary resuscitation before the rapper was transported to a hospital close by shortly after midnight.

Officials verified that he passed away shortly after the occurrence.

The reason for his death has not yet been disclosed.

Being a key member of the Houston rap scene, Big Pokey, whose real name is Milton Powell, gained local fame as part of the Screw up Click group.

The musician achieved fame for his first solo album, “The Toughest Pit in the Litter,” released in 1999.

He has launched a multitude of albums and partnerships throughout the years, with his most recent release being his 2021 album “Sensei.”

Big Pokey leaning on a car in a promotional photo
Off stage, Big Pokey was named Milton Powell, and was known by his friends and fans as being a loving friend to all.
The album cover for Big Pokey
Big Pokey released numerous albums since he began his career in the 1990s, including his most recent album, “Sensei”
Big Pokey / Instagram

According to KPRC Click2Houston, Big Pokey’s publicist stated, “On June 18, 2023, our dear Milton ‘Big Pokey’ Powell passed away.” We announce this news with profound sorrow.

‘The Big Pokey will be the most challenging time in the litter pit. We ask you to respect his privacy and his family during this difficult period. In the upcoming days, we will release information about his life celebration, while considering how the public can show their respects. He was well-loved by his loyal fans, friends, and family.’

Other Houston rappers expressed a great amount of support for a man who they referred to as “understated” and extremely gifted.

Rest in heaven. Sensei, we honor and love you. You will be dearly missed and there will never be another like you. The iconic member of SUC. If there was a person with a heart of gold. One of the pillars of our city. He knew what to do and pulled it off. He found it hard to hate and easy to love. A humble mountain of a man, who moved with respect and honor. B Bun, the rapper, wrote on Instagram that he was one of the most naturally talented artists in the city. I wasn’t ready for this.