When 46-year-old George Floyd died in police custody on May 25, the Houston hip-hop community lost one of their own. Before moving to Minneapolis in 2018, Floyd lived in Houston, where he was active in the rap scene, the Houston Chronicle reports. Most notably, he worked with the Screwed Up Click, the collective led by the late local icon DJ Screw. Floyd rapped on multiple mixtapes as Big Floyd during the ’90s, according to tracks dug up by Stereogum, and later released the album Block Party as a member of Presidential Playas in 2000. In Minneapolis, Floyd had worked as a bouncer, most recently at the restaurant Conga Latin Bistro before it closed due to the coronavirus, his employer told the New York Times.
Houston rappers have posted tributes to Floyd and called for justice in what they see as an act of police brutality against an African-American man. “R.I.P. Big Floyd He took his life in broad day may God bring his family justice,” original Screwed Up Click member Lil’ Keke wrote on Instagram. His post asked followers to call Minneapolis District Attorney Michael Freeman and demand charges be pressed against the four officers fired after detaining Floyd for an alleged forgery in progress, one of whom pushed his knee against Floyd’s neck, according to a bystander video. “Say His Name #GeorgeFloyd Rest Easy… The Fight For Us Begins Now,” rapper Trae The Truth, another member of Screwed Up Click, wrote alongside a photo of Floyd. “4 Officers Fired Aint Enough!!!” he added on a subsequent post. Minneapolis residents protested Floyd’s death and the lack of charges for the officers on May 26, and were met with more police force.