Nicknamed Snoop Dogg by his mother because of his appearance, Calvin Broadus was born on October 20, 1972 and raised in Long Beach, CA, where he frequently ran into trouble with the law. Not long after his high school graduation, Snoop Dogg was arrested for possession of cocaine
, beginning a period of three years where he was often imprisoned.
Biography and Career :
Snoop Dogg found escape from a life of crime through music. Snoop began recording homemade tapes with his friend Warren G, who happened to be the stepbrother of N.W.A.'s Dr. Dre
. Warren G gave a tape to Dre, who was considerably impressed with Snoop's style and began co
llaborating with the rapper.
When Dre decided to make his tentative first stab at a solo career in 1992 with the theme song for the film Deep Cover, he had Snoop Dogg rap with him. "Deep Cover" started a buzz about Snoop that escalated into full-fledged mania when Dre released his own debut album, The Chronic, on Death Row Records late in 1992.
Snoop Dogg rapped on The Chronic as much as Dre, and his drawled vocals were as important to the record's success as its P-Funk bass grooves. Dre's singles "Nuthin' but a 'G' Thang" and "Dre Day," which prominently featured Snoop, became Top Ten pop crossover hits in the spring of 1993, setting the stage for Snoop's much-anticipated debut album, Doggystyle. While he was recording the album with Dre in August, Snoop Dogg was arrested in connection with the drive-by shooting death of Phillip Woldermarian. According to the charges, the rapper's bodyguard, McKinley Lee, shot Woldermarian as Snoop Dogg drove the vehicle; the rapper claimed it was self-defense, alleging that the victim was stalking Snoop. Following a performance at the MTV Music Awards in September 1993, he turned himself to authorities.
After many delays, Doggystyle was finally released on Death Row in November of 1993, and it became the first debut album to enter the charts at number one. Despite reviews that claimed the album was a carbon copy of The Chronic, the Top Ten singles "What's My Name?" and "Gin & Juice" kept Doggystyle at the top of the charts during early 1994, as did the considerable controversy over Snoop's arrest and his lyrics, which were accused of being exceedingly violent and sexist. During an English tour in the spring of 1994, tabloids and a Tory minister pleaded for the government to kick the rapper out of the country, largely based on his arrest. Snoop Dogg exploited his impending trial by shooting a short film based on the Doggystyle song "Murder Was the Case" and releasing an accompanying soundtrack, which debuted at number one in 1994. By that time, Doggystyle had gone quadruple platinum.
Snoop spent much of 1995 preparing for the case, which finally went to trial in late 1995. In February of 1996, he was cleared of all charges and began working on his second album, this time without Dre as producer. Nevertheless, when The Doggfather was finally released in November 1996, it bore all the evidence of a Dre-produced, G-funk record. The album was greeted with mixed reviews, and it initially sold well, but it failed to produce a hit along the lines of "What's My Name?" and "Gin & Juice." Part of the reason of the moderate success of The Doggfather was the decline of gangsta rap. 2Pac, who had become a friend of Snoop during 1996, died weeks before the release of The Doggfather, and Dre had left Death Row to his partner Suge Knight, who was indicted on racketeering charges by the end of 1996. Consequently, Snoop's second album got lost in the shuffle, stalling at sales of two million, which was disappointing for a superstar.
Perhaps sensing something was wrong, Snoop began to revamp his public image, moving away from his gangsta roots toward a calmer lyrical aesthetic. He also began making gestures toward the rock community, signing up to tour with Lollapalooza 1997 and talking about two separate collaborations with Beck and Marilyn Manson. The solo Da Game Is to Be Sold Not to Be Told, Snoop's first effort for No Limit, followed in 1998; No Limit Top Dogg appeared a year later and Dead Man Walkin' the year after that. Tha Last Meal followed in December of that same year. The heavy release schedule resulted in varying musical quality from album to album, but by the turn of the century, Snoop had become such a cultural phenomenon that his albums almost became secondary to the personality behind them. An autobiography appeared in 2001, followed by a stream of movie roles in several high-profile pictures. Late in 2002, Snoop released his first album for Capitol, Paid tha Cost to Be da Bo$$. He then switched to Geffen for 2004's R&G (Rhythm & Gangsta): The Masterpiece. The hit album was followed a year later by Welcome to the Chuuch: The Album, a collection of tracks from the Welcome to the Chuuch mixtape series. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine, All Music Guide.
Snoop Dogg's Dates :
Shantay Taylor (1997 - 2004)
Snoop Dogg Image : vh1.com
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