American rapper, Milton Powell, best known as Big Pokey, has died at 45.
The Houston-born rapper collapsed on stage during his performance at a bar in neighbouring Beaumont, Texas, late Saturday night.
Clips from the event showed Pokey with a mic in his hand, interacting with a DJ on stage when he exhaled heavily, lost his footing, and fell on stage.
Security personnel and a woman who claimed to be a nurse rushed to his side to administer aid.
A statement on the rapper’s verified IG page confirmed his death.
The statement read: “It is with deep sadness that we share the news of the passing of our beloved Milton ‘Big Pokey’ Powell.
“Big Pokey passed away … He was well-loved by his family, his friends, and his loyal fans. In the coming days, we will release information about his celebration of life and how the public can pay their respects. We ask that you respect his family and their privacy during this difficult time. Big Pokey will forever be ‘The Hardest Pit in the Litter!’”
Pokey hit the limelight following his collaboration with DJ Screw launching the popular chopped-and-screwed style of the South.
The late rapper released countless bodies of work before his demise.