Pop Smoke took home five posthumous Billboard awards at Sunday's show, over a year after his death

By Vanessa Etienne
May 24, 2021 08:55 AM
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Rapper Pop Smoke is still being honored over a year after his death. 

On Sunday, Pop Smoke, né Bashar Barakah Jackson, earned five awards at the 2021 Billboard Music Awards: top new artist, top rap artist, top rap male artist, top Billboard 200 album and top rap album.

During the star-studded event, the late rapper's mother, Audrey Jackson, took the stage to accept her son's award for the top Billboard 200 album, which he earned for his posthumously released debut studio album, Shoot for the Stars Aim for the Moon. Jackson was joined by her other son, Obasi Jackson.

"Thank you to the fans for honoring the life and spirit of my son, so much that he continues to manifest as if he were still here in flesh," she said. "He created music for the kid who has to sleep four in a room, the kid who has to figure out how to get to school each day so he can graduate and make his mom proud."

"He did this so that 14 year olds would not have to kill to prove they are somebody," Jackson continued. "That is the irony in this, so thank you to the Billboard Awards leadership for honoring my young warrior. Bashar Barakah Jackson, we call your name."

Along with the five Billboard awards, the "For the Night" rapper also recently made history for his album, holding the record for longest weeks in the No. 1 spot on Billboard's top rap albums chart. The project spent 20 weeks on the coveted list on Billboard's chart dated March 27, beating out Eminem's 19-week run in 2011 for his seventh studio album, Recovery.

Listen below to our daily podcast PEOPLE Every Day for more on the 2021 Billboard Music Awards. 

Since his death, the rapper also won best new hip hop artist at the 2020 BET Hip Hop Awards and received a 2021 GRAMMY nomination for best rap performance for "Dior."

Pop Smoke was shot and killed on Feb. 19, 2020 during an alleged home invasion. He was 20 years old. In July,  the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office announced that four teenagers — and two adults Corey Walker and Keandre Rodgers — had been charged with robbery and murder. The case is still ongoing.

Pop Smoke
Pop Smoke
| Credit: Bertrand Rindoff Petroff/Getty

In January, the Brooklyn rapper's brother, Obasi, opened up about his family's grief over the past year and the last conversation they had just days before the star was killed.

"Me losing my only brother — I'm going to miss so many things," he said during his appearance on Taraji P. Henson's Facebook Watch mini-series, Peace of Mind with Taraji. "I won't be able to hug my brother again, tell him I love him, see him again. [I] won't be able to play basketball with him again, work out with him again. I won't be able to show him my accomplishments."

"That last conversation [showed me that], 'Okay, I know my brother loves me and he knows I definitely love him.' He said he loved me," he added.