snoop

I’m a fan of Snoop Dogg – from Doggystyle to collaborating with Wiz Khalifa to his smooth confidence on The Price Is Right, and other various appearances in pop culture: Starsky & Hutchthe Pepsi commercial and his reality show, Snoop Dogg’s Fatherhood. Well, maybe not the latter. For the most part, I’m down with Snoop Dogg. Dogg, not Lion.

Snoop felt the need to reinvent himself, but the product was poor. Snoop Lion’s debut album, Reincarnated had me scrambling to find all the gin and juice I could throw back just to make it out of track 3.

As if combining Reggae and pop music isn’t risky enough, it was worsened by the fact that Snoop, who has no business in Reggae, was behind all of it. It was the equivalent of that kid who wears the red, yellow, and green bracelet and Bob Marley t-shirt because he smokes a lot of pot. Great, Snoop hung out in Jamaica for some months, but that doesn’t qualify him to make a Reggae album. Reincarnated is gimmicky, the pop-influenced production is cheap, and the content is absurdly stereotypical – the result that Bunny Wailer had feared.

Blatant pot references like songs titled “Smoke the Weed” and “Lighters Up” centralize marijuana in Reggae culture, which is inaccurate. Not to mention the dreadfully cliché album artwork. You wouldn’t find such literal references on any Toots and the Maytals album. Maybe 1 or 2 song titles throughout Bob Marley’s entire discography. He failed miserably at defending his ludicrous assertion that he is Bob Marley reincarnated.

 

 

 

Props to Snoop on getting Drake to rap about something besides women – credit where it’s due. On the song “No Guns Allowed” the two rap about the negativity of guns in society. It’s also nice to see his daughter singing with him. Regardless, it comes off as synthetic. I’m not pinning Snoop as a liar who doesn’t actually care about violence in society, but it seems that because it was a ‘Reggae’ album he felt the need to speak about peace.

 

 

I don’t think anyone is buying his act. That he is trying to find himself and explore the roots of reggae. Regardless of the Jamaican singers who were featured on the album, appearances from Miley Cyrus, Drake, and Chris Brown confirm that this was a reach for mainstream success.

This isn’t a case of a rapper trying to stretch out and explore his talents. Reincarnated came off as a washed up rapper trying to stay relevant. The problem is Snoop isn’t necessarily washed up. He may be bored with rap, but he is still a prominent pop-culture figure – one that I enjoy. He needs to stay in his lane. There’s nothing wrong with enjoying and appreciating the genre, but the album did no justice to Reggae music or Snoop’s career.

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