The Leisure List: The return of the Doggfather
'I WAS like the class clown in school so I guess I would say I did like the attention. In church I did a lot of plays, my mother made me play characters, do a lot of drama and acting, trying to become someone else. So it helped me create who I am, to create Snoop Dogg," he said a few years ago.
The rapper and marijuana super-devotee known mostly as Snoop Dogg is still in a class of his own, of course. He published a book of his lyrics a few years ago that could be recycled after reading – i.e., rolled up in a joint and smoked, presumably while listening to some of his shape-throwing classics like Gin and Juice, Drop It Like It's Hot and Nuthin' But A 'G' Thang.
"I made this book so people can always remember, you can roll with an expert," he told The Guardian matter of factly, "So you can roll with Snoop, and get it together."
The artist is occasionally called Snoop Lion as a homage to Rasta music and culture, and not so much a commercial persona/reinvention as an inner journey to weed-fired enlightenment.
For the cynical among you, watch the Reincarnated movie on Netflix in the US, for the full story of Snoop's "transformational" pilgrimage to Jamaica "to re-emerge as Snoop Lion".
I spent almost two hours of my life watching it the other night and it's hard not to warm to him as he walks up mountains with his followers, smokes "a chalice" with Bob Marley's old mucker Bunny Wailer in his house in the jungle; and generally becomes reincarnated as The Lion.
You can hear the results on his reggae-motivated album Reincarnated from 2012. I have to say that I found the record a bit patchy and pined for his more trad rap, so to speak.
All of which is a good thing for me and other fans of Snoop aka The Lion, because he is bringing his greatest hits (as opposed to greatest hits on a bong) show to Dublin's Academy on Middle Abbey Street for two nights on June 10 and 11.
He will also be bringing with him special guests Daz Dillinger, Kurupt aka The Dogg Pound, Mr Soopafly Priest Brooks and DJ Rashid Williams.
The Doggfather, whose career began properly on Dr Dre's 1992 solo debut The Chronic, released his best – and one of rap's best ever – album on his actual debut with the brilliant Doggystyle in 1993.
Expect him to play many of the hits that make him rich and (in)famous from that album like What's My Name, Murder Was The Case, Ain't No Fun (If the Homies Can't Have None), and Gin and Juice when he and his crew pimp-roll into Dublin in two weeks.
You would be barkin' to miss these shows. Woof! Woof! Grrr! Grrrr!
Snoop Dogg at the Academy, Dublin, June 10th and 11th, tickets, €49.50
Sunday Indo Living