One of Dancehall’s greats has become wary of the musical path taken by Snoop Lion (formerlySnoop Dogg) as Lady Saw recently took the popular American musician to task for his venturing into Reggae music.
In a recent interview, the ‘Queen of Dancehall’ voiced her disapproval of Snoop’s dabbling into the Reggae market. When speaking following her performance at Usain Bolt’s Tracks and Records in late July, Lady Saw spoke about the implications for Jamaican Reggae artists who strive to achieve chart and commercial success internationally with overseas acts such as Snoop Lion infiltrating the market.
It’s not just a name change, but there’s a new take on life for Snoop Lion, who switched his stage name from Snoop Dogg after a trip to Jamaica where he embraced Rastafarian culture.
And the new project works.
Snoop’s first reggae album, “Reincarnated,” includes some fine production by Major Lazer (aka Diplo), with guest appearances from Miley Cyrus, Akon, Rita Ora and Angela Hunte, who co-wrote the Jay-Z hit “Empire State of Mind.”
The rapper is still the marijuana-smoking, ultra-smooth Snoop we’ve all come to know and love. But he’s also more focused on love and happiness, not the gangsta raps he spewed in the past.
He sings against gun violence on “No Guns Allowed,” which features rapper Drake and vocals from his daughter Cori B. The track is special because it shows how Snoop has matured as a musician — and bringing on his 13-year-old daughter only drives home the point. He tackles global warming on “Tired of Running” with Akon, and preaches unity on “Lighters Up,” featuring Mavado and Popcaan.
The gem of the album, though, is the dancehall track featuring Cyrus. “Ashtrays and Heartbreaks” is an easygoing track.
While there are misses — like “Get Away” and “Fruit Juice” — most of Snoop’s twelfth album is an entertaining piece of work.
Prominent members of Jamaica’s Rastafarian community have long been skeptical of Snoop Lion‘s recent conversion from gangster rapper to a melodic Reggae musician. They now have made their reasoning clear as to why they believe his new ‘Lion’ moniker is nothing more than a cheap gimmick.
Iconic Reggae musician, Bunny Wailerhas been very vocal regarding Snoop Dogg‘s morphing into a ‘Lion’ in February of last year as he visited Jamaica to film a new documentary, Reincarnated. The film, which premiered across U.S. Theatres last Friday, shows footage of Snoop’s intimate conversation with Wailer while showing the former rapper’s interaction with several high priests at a Nyabinghi temple in Clarendon during his visit.
However, Wailer and members of the Ethio-Africa Diaspora Union Millennium Council claim footage of both encounters were used illegally in Reincarnated and have been reaching out to Snoop for what they claim are breaches of an agreement struck during the American entertainer’s visit.
Reincarnated, the much anticipated documentary by Snoop Lionwill finally make its way to theatres March 15th.
New York based magazine/multimedia outlet and producers for Reincarnated, VICEmade the announcement regarding the movie’s release date on Thursday. Reincarnated can be viewed across a number of select American theatres, including New York’s Sunshine Cinemas, Laemmle Monica and City Walk (Los Angeles), Opera Plaza (San Francisco), Century (Chicago), Midtown Art Cinema (Atlanta) and O Cinema. The film will also debut across theatres in the United Kingdom on March 22. No announcement was made regarding if and when the movie will make its way to Jamaican theatres.
Snoopadelic Films in collaboration with VICE Films shot the long-awaited feature film last year during Snoop’s trip to Jamaica. It recalls the captivating and somewhat eccentric journey of an artiste who went from a gangster rap icon into a Reggae crooner while trying to understand the nuances of the island’s culture, music and people.
Days after legendary Reggae singer, Bunny Wailer and members of the Rastafari Millennium Council went after Snoop Lionfor his alleged profiting off Rastafarian culture, the former gangster rapper turned Reggae crooner hopes to make amends with them.
Snoop Lion will reportedly fly down to Jamaica in February to meet with Wailer and the Rasta Council in an attempt to hash out a truce Last week, Wailer blasted Snoop in an interview with TMZ for using the Rastafarian culture to help him sell records, accusing the artiste formerly known as Snoop Doggof failing to meet the ‘contractual, moral and verbal commitments’ of being a Rasta.
Wailer also chastized Snoop of ‘outright fraudulent use of Rastafari Community’s personalities and symbolism,’ while the Rasta Council, which he heads, released a statement saying in part, “Smoking weed and loving Bob Marley and Reggae music is not what defines the Rastafari indigenous culture!”
Snoop Lion’s recent transformation from hardcore rap to Reggae has surprised and even amused many music fans locally and overseas. However, some prominent Rastafarians are far from enthused about the entertainer’s new persona.
Legendary Reggae singer, Bunny Wailerhas called out the artiste formerly known as Snoop Dogg, claiming he has been using his ‘Lion’ moniker to profit off Rastafarian culture. Wailer and the Ethio-Africa Diaspora Union Millenium Council issued a seven page letter to Snoop Lion on Wednesday outlining their grievances with the artiste.
Wailer told TMZ of his belief that Snoop Lion is only using the Rastafarian moniker to sell records and his Reincarnatedmovie while insisting the converted Reggae crooner has failed to meet the “contractual, moral and verbal commitments” of being a Rasta.
According to Wailer, Snoop has engaged in ‘outright fraudulent use of Rastafari Community’s personalities and symbolism” — and has failed to meet “contractual, moral and verbal commitments.’
The Council also questioned Snoop’s motives for making the switch, demanding he drop the ‘Lion’ off his name immediately. “Smoking weed and loving Bob Marley and Reggae music is not what defines the Rastafari indigenous Culture!” they said in their statement.
Snoop Lion, who has traveled to Jamaica on several occasions over the last year, has yet to respond to these accusations. In a recent television interview, Snoop explained he was given the ‘Lion’ name by a group of Rastafarians he visited during his trip to Jamaica last February, signaling his maturity as a man.
The California-born entertainer returned to the island earlier this month as he shot the official video for his single, Lighters Up, featuring prominent Dancehall artistes, Popcaan and Mavado. He is also promoting the new web series, Noisey Jamaica, a 10-part web series exploring the nuances of Dancehall music and culture which debuted on Tuesday.
Recently reincarnated American musician, Snoop Lion (formerly Snoop Dogg) continues to showcase his infatuation for Jamaican culture by shooting his first music video in the island. He is also using it as an opportunity to bridge two of music’s camps together.
Snoop Lion arrived in the island last weekend to shoot his second Reggae video since shifting his moniker earlier this year. The video, for his single Lighters Up, features appearances from prominent ‘Gaza’ artiste, Popcaan and popular ‘Gully’ singjay, Mavado. The trio shot the Andy Capper directed video in Portland.
In an interview on TVJ’s Entertainment Report aired Friday, Snoop Dogg admitted that he used Lighters Up as an opportunity to bring together two of the biggest names from the ‘Gaza’ and ‘Gully’ camps, known for their animosity towards each other in recent years.
Internationally acclaimed rap star, Snoop Dogghas reinvigorated his career by morphing into a full-fledged ‘Lion’ and credits Reggae music’s greatest product for his transformation.
Set to release his first Reggae album entitled Reincarnated, Snoop Lionhas remodeled his musical approach in recent months; moving from the hardcore gangster raps he became renowned for into a more peaceful zone through efforts like La La La, the first single off Reincarnated.
In an interview with MTV earlier this week, Snoop Lion credited Reggae icon, Bob Marleyas one of the pioneers who helped him change his musical style; also citing Beres Hammond, Peter Tosh. Gregory Isaacs and Bunny Wailer as inspirations that helped guide him towards forming his new persona.
VICE Films, in partnership with Snoopadelic Films, presents REINCARNATED. The documentary follows Snoop Dogg as he journeys to Jamaica to record an album with Diplo. While there, Snoop finds himself embraced by the Jamaican people, is positively impacted by Rastafarian culture, and becomes reincarnated as Snoop Lion.
Premiering at the Toronto International Film Festival September 7th
Produced by Diplo and the Major Lazer production team, “La La La” was recently recorded in Jamaica and is Snoop Lion’s debut song. Releasing soon, Reincarnated sonically represents Snoop’s time in Jamaica where he was positively impacted by both the Rastafarian culture and the Jamaican people who embraced him along the journey of being reincarnated into Snoop Lion.
Months after internationally acclaimed rap legend, Snoop Doggfilmed a documentary in Jamaica, the prominent artiste has created an alter ego symbolic of the island’s culture and its most popular genre.
In February, Snoop Dogg visited Jamaica as he shot footage for a documentary focusing on the Rastafari Movement as well as the island’s culture. Additionally, the rap icon reportedly recorded a single at Geejam Studios in Portland for his upcoming album, Reincarnated.
Obviously fond of Jamaican folklore and Reggae music, Snoop Dogg recently created a new moniker, Snoop Lion and has recorded his debut single under the new alter-ego dubbed, La La La. Produced by Major Lazer, La La La showcases an authentic Reggae sound as Snoop attempts to speak Jamaican patois. Meanwhile, popular Reggae singer, Jovi Rockwell features on the track as she provides background vocals.
So far, the reception to Snoop Dogg’s change of style has been positive as fans and even Bob Marley’s son, Rohan Marley offered words of encouragement via Twitter (@snoop_lion) to the prominent entertainer.
This past March, Major Lazer’s Diplo hinted during an interview with MTV.com that he and Snoop Dogg will be working on a Reggae album together.
“What we’re doing is a reggae record. It’s like Snoop Dogg and Major Lazer together. It’s all reggae and he’s singing and he’s doing an awesome job and I never knew it, but he had his heart in every song,” he said.
“We’re going to get back into the production of it next month, and I’m really proud of that record. It’s the first record I’ve ever executive-produced and his crew is amazing.”
Major Lazer has significant experience dabbling in Jamaican music, working with highly regarded Dancehall/Reggae acts such as Vybz Kartel, Busy Signal and Mr. Lexx.
Meanwhile, Snoop Lion will give his first live performance during Caribana 2012 next week Friday in Toronto, Canada.
Breakthrough Dancehall superstar, Popcaan continues to add to his international resume as he’s reportedly landed another collaboration with a prominent American rapper.
On February 17, Popcaan released the official remix of his number one hit, Only Man She Want, which featured internationally acclaimed Jamaican-American rapper, Busta Rhymes. The song, which was unveiled via iTunes, has also earned over 50,000 YouTube views since its debut nearly two weeks ago; earning the Portmore Empire deejay strong acclaim locally and overseas.
Now, media reports have confirmed that Popcaan has joined forces with veteran hip-hop superstar, Snoop Dogg, who’s currently in Jamaica recording material for his upcoming studio album, Reincarnated as well as filming a documentary about the Rastafari Movement in Jamaica.
Internationally-acclaimed hip hop artiste, Snoop Dogg will become the latest foreign act of note to visit Jamaica to record new material.
Following recent visits by American R&B superstar, Alicia Keys as well as Senegalese rap superstar, Akon to the island to work on new music, Snoop Dogg has announced that he will be travelling to Jamaica in the near future to record a new single. The announcement was made via Snoop Dogg’s official YouTube channel this past Monday as he honored what would have been the 67th birthday of late Reggae legend, Bob Marley.
In the video, Snoop Dogg puffs marijuana to honor the Reggae icon while playing one of Marley’s highly-acclaimed singles, So Much Trouble.
Internationally acclaimed Dancehall/Reggae singer, Barrington Levy, will unveil his 29th and, possibly, last studio album/compilation this week.
It’s About Time, Levy’s much talked about project, will be released via Black Roses Entertainment; featuring several prominent local and international acts. The album’s regarded by many fans and Dancehall observers as his most anticipated album since 1998’s Living Dangerously that featured Dancehall superstar, Bounty Killer for the album’s classic title track, as well as American hip-hop superstar, Snoop Dogg.
Snoop features once again alongside Levy for It’s About Time along with fellow rapper Jadakiss and Jamaican-born hip-hop stars, Busta Rhymes as well as the late Heavy D. Love Me Like This features Heavy D, who recently passed away at his Los Angeles home of complications from pneumonia at the age of 44. The single was reportedly recorded in California last year