Tribute Series: He would have turned 50 for the 50th Hip-Hop Culture : George Floyd AKA Big Floyd

December 31, 2023 by
Nation Hip-Hop, Alex Wallace


Hip-Hop is basically a way of claiming and the sad story that follows demonstrates that the fight begins. In 100 years, will people have the mentality of yesteryear?

This year would have marked the fiftieth birthday of George Floyd, a person whose name has become synonymous with the fight against injustice and police brutality. However, instead of celebrating this jubilee, we are faced with the reality of a tragically shortened life.



Few people know that George Floyd AKA Big Floyd appeared on the Diary of the Originator and Screw ZooFreestyles albums. Floyd was a member of the band Presidential Playas. The band released their only album Block Party in 1996. Screw even dedicated a personal tape to Floyd called Tre World.

The sad ending of George Floyd’s story took place late at the hospital, where his death was declared after police maneuvers that shook the world. The official autopsy, approved by the medical service of the armed forces, found a homicide highlighting the excessive maneuvers of the police to control it.

An autopsy commissioned by the family of George Floyd also supports the thesis of homicide highlighting cardiopulmonary arrest, claiming that he had been asphyxiated and that no underlying health problems were present. This contrast highlights the controversy surrounding his death and the persistent debates about police tactics used that day.



The ensuing events shook the world. The three police officers involved were immediately fired. Derek Chauvin, the officer directly responsible, was charged with various charges ranging from third-degree murder to second-degree homicide. The other three police officers were also charged with complicity in murder.

The preliminary hearing that followed was the starting point for protests and riots not only in Minneapolis and Saint Paul, but also across the United States and other countries. Shocking images of the veneer on the ground and news of George Floyd’s death served as a catalyst for global awareness of systemic issues of police brutality and racial injustice.

The sentencing of the murderer to twenty-one years in prison by the Minnesota state justice system marked an important milestone but this cannot erase the pain of the loss of George Floyd. This cannot erase the years of systematic injustice suffered by marginalized people.

As we commemorate what would have been his fiftieth birthday, we are also called to reflect on the need to fight for justice, equality and the end of systemic violence.

The Impact of the Hip-Hop Movement on Police Brutality and Reactions to the Death of George Floyd



The world of Hip-Hop has always been a space for social and political expression used by many artists to denounce injustices. 

Long before George Floyd’s death, hip-hop was already a powerful vector of social criticism. Artists such as N.W.A with Fuck tha Police in the 80s, Public Enemy with Fight the Power or KRS-One with Sound of da Police in the 90s, paved the way by addressing police abuse and racial inequalities

When George Floyd died in May 2020 following a police blunder, many rappers reacted with indignation and used their platform to raise public awareness of police brutality.

Killer Mike, a member of Run The Jewels, gave an emotional speech calling for unity and the need for community action at a press conference in Atlanta.

Several songs have emerged as poignant responses to injustice. Lil Baby’s The Bigger Picture offers an introspective look at police violence and protests. J. Cole released Snow on Tha Bluff, addressing the responsibility of artists in the movement. Conway the Machine went from a heavy and hard song with Front Lines and even the GOAT, LL Cool J, manifested itself with its title Untitled rap.

The Hip-Hop world has also seen tangible initiatives. Jay-Z used his foundation, the Shawn Carter Foundation, to offer scholarships to George Floyd’s children. Financial contributions and activism have demonstrated the hip-hop world’s commitment to fighting police brutality.


Photo : unknow


These actions and songs are not only artistic expressions but driving forces for change. They have helped amplify voices against police brutality and have highlighted the systemic issues facing many communities.

Hip-Hop continues to play a key role in exposing police brutality. Artists not only sing about these issues, they actively engage in concrete actions to promote change.


Over the past 50 years, the Hip-Hop cultural movement has been the undisputed voice denouncing social injustices around the world. From the American scene to France and all the way to Quebec, the songs resolutely addressed burning themes such as racial profiling, police brutality and blunders, thus creating a web of protest.

Here is a list with some great American, French and Quebec headlines dealing with this delicate subject. We haven’t put the whole list, because believe us it would be too long.


USA

N.W.A. / F**K tha Police (1988)

Ice-T / Cop killer (1990)

LL Cool J / Illegal search (1990)

Main Source / Just a friendly game of baseball (1991)

Cypress Hill / Pigs (1992)

2Pac / Trapped (1992)

Geto Boys / Crooked officer (1993)

Krs-One / Sound of da police (1993)

O.C. / Constable (1994)

Jay-Z / 99 Problems

Killer Mike / Don't die (2012)

J.Cole / Be Free (2014)

Joey Bada$$ / Land of the free (2017)

Rapsody, Kendrick Lamar, Skiiwalker / Power (2017)

Nas / Cops shot the kid (2018)



France

Suprême NTM / Police (1993)

Ministère A.M.E.R. / Plus vite que les balles (1994)

Ministère A.M.E.R. / Sacrifices de poulets

(B.O. La Haine 1997)

DJ Cut Killer / Nique la police 

(B.O. La Haine 1997)

Assassin / L'État assassine (1997)

Fonky Family / Cherche pas à comprendre (1998)

Idéal J / Pour une poignée de dollars (1998)

La Rumeur / Pas de justice, pas de paix (1999)

KDD / Qui tu es? (2000)

Saïan Supa Crew / Polices (2001)

2 Bal 2 Neg’ et Mystik / La sédition 

(B.O. Ma 6-t va crack-er 2007)

Keny Arkana / Planquez-vous (2011)

Ul'Team Atom / L'Entonnoir (2020)

33 MCs / 13'12 contre les violences policières (2020)



Quebec

Rainmen / Freedom (1998)

Sirjay, Baxter Dexter, Wanted, Tyjeï Drezle, Le Connaisseur Ticaso, Kasheem, Cyrus, L'Insolent / Burn Dem Babylon (French Remix 2009)

Sans Pression / Popo (2010)

Webster / SPVQ (2010)

Souldia et Saye / Crêve mon porc (2011)

Obia le Chef et El Cotola / État Policier (2011)

Yvon Krevé et Buzzy Bwoy / Fuck the police (2012)

Jeune Chilly Chill, Cheak13, FiligraNn, MC Aussi, DJ Horg / Éradiquer les radicaux (2012)

Le Voyou, SP, Cobna, La Dame de Pique, Dramatik, Cris, Clermont, Vagalam, 

Dupuis / VILLENEUVE (2013)

Dézuets d'Plingrés / Petits poulets (2014)

Dix-Iple Deca et Elijah King / Criminel (2020)

Obia le Chef / Anne Frank (2020)

Coolman Logan / Justice for (2023)



Cet article est dédié à George Floyd et sa famille.



Nation Hip-Hop, Alex Wallace December 31, 2023