Just weeks before he was shot and killed at a Los Angeles restaurant, late rapper PnB Rock talked to DJ Akademiks about the danger faced by rappers in the city. “It’s so common,” he said in an interview with DJ Akademiks filmed earlier this month for his Off the Record podcast in which the pair discussed the recent violence in the city where Nipsey Hussle, Drakeo the Ruler and Pop Smoke have been gunned down.
PnB, though, added, “I never got robbed, never in my life. I ain’t gon say never ’cause I’m not superstitious or nothing like that, but I haven’t been robbed.”
The “I Like Girls” rapper (born Rakim Hasheem Allen), 30, died after being shot at Roscoe’s Chicken & Waffles in Inglewood on Monday (Sept. 12) while dining with his girlfriend. The Los Angeles Times reported the suspect “brandished a firearm inside the restaurant and demanded items from the victim.” Rock was reportedly targeted for his jewelry.
Speaking of the “spooky” nature of Los Angeles, Akademiks asked PnB if he’d ever had run-ins in the city. “Somebody tried me on Fairfax, like, mid-pandemic,” PnB said of an incident in which he was approached while out with his family. “N—as was talking loud as s–t wanting me to hear their conversation and it’s like, ‘I’m with my peoples — my daughter and my girl. Why are they talking about this gangsta s–t? What the f–k is going on?’
Not liking the vibe, the rapper said he was ready to bounce to avoid the weird mood. “So I’m like, ‘Man, we outta here.’ My girl like, ‘Nah, we ain’t — what’s wrong?’,” he recalled. “I’m just going off of the vibes. She ain’t peep it, she be thinking I’m tripping. She peeped that I’m serious.”
He described jumping in the car with his girlfriend and driving off and then stopping a few blocks later so that she could go into a store she spotted, only to realize that the gang members had followed him in a “tinted to the max” car with some serious “heat” coming off of it. “I ain’t go in the store for two seconds, the same people come from out the car, hop in the store hype as s–t, say some gang banging s–t,” he recalled. “I recognized the energy. He started talking to me on some gangsta s–t. I’m like, ‘Bruh, do you know me? Do you know me from somewhere?’ He like, ‘N—a, yeah I know who you is!’ Trying to get me to, like, get into some s–t.”
Looking to avoid a confrontation, PnB said he calmly walked away. “You don’t want to be nervous and make it seem like something ’bout to happen. You want them [your girl and your kids] to be as calm as possible to make it seem like everything is cool, ain’t nothing about to happen to us,” he said. “So I just kept it cordial like, ‘Come on, baby. We out. These n—as on some real s–t.’ When they got to the car, that’s when I let n—as know like, ‘I’m not on that.’ And I ain’t gonna say what happened, but n—as know that I’m just not on that.”
Near the end of the interview, without naming names, PnB confirmed that some MCs have definitely been robbed. “It’s more than three [rappers getting robbed.] N—as be gettin’ their s–t took,” he said. “It don’t be spoken about… now it’s so common.”
“Pray for pnb rock….the man got family and kids smh God be with the man,” Offset wrote on Twitter following the rapper’s death. Russ — who collaborated with PnB on “Issues” from Rock’s Billboard 200 No. 17 album Catch These Vibes in 2017 — also wrote, “Damn man. RIP PNB Rock. So sad.”
Watch the interview with Akademiks below.