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Pop Smoke ‘Could’ve Been Leading the Pack in Hip-Hop’: This Week in Billboard News Podcast

Plus, the latest on The Weeknd, Justin Bieber, Billie Eilish and more.

Welcome to the This Week in Billboard News podcast, where Jordyn Rolling, Billboard News host and producer, and Gary Trust, Billboard senior director of charts, dive into the week’s biggest music news stories.

This week, we cover the death of rapper Pop Smoke, was reportedly murdered Wednesday (Feb. 19) during a home invasion robbery in the Hollywood Hills. He was just 20 years old. (A spokesperson for the LAPD confirmed the details of the report to Billboard, but did not name the alleged victim, citing privacy rules.)

Trevor Anderson, Billboard R&B/hip-hop chart manager, stops by to discuss Pop Smoke’s chart success and more, as just this week he earned his first top 10 album on the Billboard 200, as Meet the Woo 2 debuted at No. 7.



“If you know anything about drill music, it’s a hip-hop sub-genre out of Chicago,” Anderson muses. “He was really one of the big proponents of that, and people think that might be the next sub-genre to break through in hip-hop. He was on the front edge of that, ahead of his time, and one of the ones in the next couple of years who could’ve been leading the pack in hip-hop.”

Jordyn and Gary also cover the latest on The Weeknd’s forthcoming album, After Hours; a new countrified twist on Justin Bieber’s hit “Yummy”; Billie Eilish’s James Bond theme song, “No Time to Die”; and more.

Plus, get up to date on all things Billboard charts, including Garth Brooks’ record-setting new top 10; Eilish’s latest achievement atop Alternative Songs; and a forecast for Bieber’s new album, Changes, which is set to launch at No. 1 on the Billboard 200.

Enjoy the latest This Week in Billboard News podcast and check back for additional upcoming episodes. And, to receive every episode automatically in your inbox, subscribe to (and rate) the podcast on Apple Music and listen on Spotify, Google Play, Simplecast and more.