Artists from New York, London, and all over the world have embraced and tried to replicate that Chicago drill sound, which emerge from underserved communities in those respective cities.
Although Brooklyn drill artists have helped make the sound mainstream, it’s rooted from gang culture and drama often times erupt outside of the booth.
The mothers of slain rappers FBG Duck,Lil Mister, Ray Ray, and Tooka talked to Chicago’s Drea O Show about their children.
Drill’s founding father, Chief Keef, had beef with Tooka and consequently made countless references to “smoking on” him in records. Many fans glamorized this type of disrespect and reduced the slain 15-year-old who was murdered at a bus stop to a social media meme and weed slang.
Tooka’s mom, Dominique Boyd, spoke about how these taunting lyrics make her feel and attempted to humanize her baby boy. “He got his nickname from the hospital. They called him ‘Attitude,’ I shortened it up to ‘Tooka.’ … I don’t get how they could be intimidated by someone who was 15 years old and want to take a person and want to be making it into a strain of weed. Like how could you [say] ‘smoking on Tooka?’ Like where did that come from? Who smokes on a dead person? It makes me upset. … Where does the level of disrespect stop? He’s already dead.”
Boyd added that her son has been deceased for about a decade and a lot of upcoming and established artists who are “smoking on Tooka” don’t even know him. “People are just so cruel out here in this world. … My son been dead for ten years. … If it ain’t the upcoming [rappers], it’s the ones already in the industry—and they don’t even know my son.”
Chicago’s drill culture impacted the rest of the world and these mothers are having an open dialogue to promote peace. “What I’m trying to establish now is a round table to bring all the moms together who have lost their children due to the violence,” said the mom of FBG Duck, LaSheena Weekly. “Due to the stigma that everybody has on Chicago with the smoking the dead people and disrespecting the dead. Hopefully, this movement will stop that and show people’s real talent.”