Snoop Dogg is a man with a new sound and a new moniker to go along with it. The easygoing rapper known for his L.A. swag and his love of ganja is now a reggae artist. That's right; Calvin Broadus, the phenom who helped put West Coast hip hop on the map, is making a switch.
Longtime fans will remember Snoop making his entry into the music world at the side of uber-producer Dr. Dre as Snoop Doggy Dogg. His distinctive drawl made fans take notice. Then Snoop dropped the "Doggy." Now Snoop has another name change to highlight his updated persona. Meet Snoop Lion, the "Gin and Juice" man's newest alter ego.
Stars from all musical genres have dabbled in reggae, the heartfelt music with Jamaican roots made popular by Bob Marley. The hip hop world has also had an ongoing relationship with reggae. It makes sense as many of hip hop's greatest stars such as Nicki Minaj, the late Heavy D and Wyclef Jean have a Caribbean heritage.
One of the factors that takes an artist from good to great is the willingness to take risks. Throughout his career, Snoop has consistently taken out-of-the-box steps that keep his fans tuned in.
Let's look closer at Snoop Lion's switcheroos:
Snoop's first tropical infused single is named "La La La." The tune introduces his upcoming reggae album, "Reincarnated." Jovi Rockwell, an up and coming artist, sings on the track. This innovative project sounds like a true artistic reinvention rather than just a rapper with a reggae beat. All in all, well done for a Ja-faken.
The reggae is interesting but Snoop has been a musical genre-bender in the past. A few months ago he partnered with crooner Willie Nelson on the country tune "Roll Me Up." It was a fitting collaboration as both musical legends have been arrested for marijuana possession at various times. We can only imagine what that studio was like!
Snoop shocked everyone when he revealed his private side as a loving family man. His reality show "Snoop Dogg's Father Hood" showed the rapper interacting with his gorgeous wife and mannerly kids. It was yet another moment of reinvention for the mercurial and fun-loving hip hop star. Snoop's persona as an approachable gangsta rapper with a heart of gold was cemented when he repeatedly called his wife, Shante, the "Queen of the Castle."
Who would think that Snoop would be on tracks aimed at kids? Again, the man continues to surprise. "Daddy's Girl" is a musical collabo between Snoop and his daughter Cori B., whom he calls "Chocolate." On the father-daughter anthem, the pretty tween sings about being spoiled by her famous dad.
So, what do you think of Snoop as a reggae artist? Does the song "La La La" measure up or is this just another musical gimmick.
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