Los Angeles isn’t all sunshine and palm trees, according to local rapper Blueface. He warned rappers about moving to the city and letting their guard down while paying tribute to the late Pop Smoke, who was shot and killed this morning during a home invasion in Hollywood Hills. Blueface recommends newcomers contact a local to operate as kind of a guide, at least until they have learned the lay of the land. However, he was careful to note that he wasn’t quite referring to the inner city’s notorious gang culture, which might put a tourist in touch with the wrong kind of native.
“People think Cali/LA is beautiful sunny palm trees, n****s die here every single day,” he wrote on his Instagram story. I recommend any artist coming this way to get in touch wit the right natives just to keep you up to speed. Soon as you relax an think it’s cool this way that’s when they strike.” It quickly became apparent that some observers interpreted this to mean “check in for a hood pass,” which isn’t quite the same thing — after all, Hollywood Hills is about as far away from Compton as it gets.
“A young immature dumb n**** might take what I said as ‘checking in,'” he clarified. “If you do tap in wit a n**** who Shows any signs of power or misconception cuz you hit him when you land then that is the WRONG native.” He also made sure to include an “RIP Pop Smoke,” lest anyone reading get the wrong impression.
Blueface’s comments reflect a general sentiment circulating online that Pop Smoke’s death was motivated by jealousy and enabled by his unfortunate reveal of his address on social media, giving would-be attackers all the information they’d need to locate and rob him. After all, as a New Yorker allegedly caught up in gang rivalries back home, he may well have felt safer far away from Brooklyn blocks on which he he and his friends kept a watchful eye.
Read more tributes to Pop Smoke here.