Snoop Doggy Dogg – Doggystyle

Snoop Doggy Dogg - DoggystyleIn this industry everyone loves to claim that their debut album was a classic. But what truly makes a classic album? Let’s run down the list of prerequisites that are needed for an album to have the right to be called a classic. First and foremost it would need to have numerous chart topping smash hits. It would need to have a couple cult underground hits. Legendary tales surrounding its production is definitely a must. Then there’s the most important aspect – impact and influence for years to come. It has to revolutionize whatever genre it represents. All of said traits can be found in Snoop Doggy Dogg’s impressive 1993 debut album, Doggystyle. This 13 track masterpiece (18 on the original print since skits were on separate tracks) certified two things in its wake. One, Dr. Dre’s The Chronic would not be a one hit wonder for Death Row Records, and two, Snoop had established himself as a full blown superstar. With that in mind, feel free to dipp with us as we take a trip down memory lane.

1. Bathtub

The initial album intro takes us into the pimp’d out lifestyle of Snoop Doggy Dogg. While getting bathed by a sultry sounding woman, the doorbell rings. In true pimp fashion Snoop sends his girl to ‘handle that’. As she opens it, bursting through the door are legions of plastic well wishers all trying to get a word with the big dogg. After a brief conversation with Warren G, who puts Snoop’s new baller status life into perspective, the show begins!

2. G Funk Intro

True to its name, the G Funk Intro ushers in the overture to Doggystyle in perfect G-Funk fashion. However, the first voice to be heard rapping on the album is not Snoop. The lyrical gangbanger herself, The Lady of Rage, tears up the intro with an aggressive and on point set. Following Rage’s impressive drop Snoop hits us with a small Two-bar taste of things to come. The beat to the intro takes cue from Dr. Dre’s fascination with the Parliament Funkadelic era of funk music as a definite homage’s to “(Not Just) Knee Deep” can be heard.

3 Gin And Juice

Perhaps one of the most recognizable tracks in Snoop Dogg’s career, Gin and Juice could possibly be credited to Snoop’s ascension from popular newcomer to music superstar icon. The Grammy nominated second single off the album became an overnight radio/club/party smash hit and was released itself as a single, earning a gold certification. The lyrics to the song come out strong and catchy. More specifically the hook to the song has been so influential in Hip-Hop culture that it has been the subject of re-use by such artists as 2Pac, Jay-Z, and 50 Cent. The beat itself contains heavy samples of George McRae’s “I Get Lifted” which compliments Dr. Dre’s energetically potent production. Gin and Juice is the quintessential early 90’s club banger.

4. Tha Shiznit

This is one of the best seemingly freestyled tracks on the whole album. Dr. Dre’s fast paced, yet oh so rhythmic beat is perfect behind Snoop’s ridiculously smooth flow centering on the flyest subject Snoop can speak on – himself. The bass guitar licks have an almost calming effect, while the funky jazz flute part of the melody leaves a lasting impression on the audience. Definitely not to be skipped over.

5. Lodi Dodi

This eerily slow and catchy homage to the 1985 Slick Rick and Doug E. Fresh classic “La Di Da Di” is the first underground hit of the album. Snoop recites almost word-for-word the original song in this G-Funk’d remake, which ironically to this day is ritualistically recited word-for-word by true Hip-Hop heads. Dr. Dre, true to his style at the time, provides a chilling and unnerving beat.

6. Murder Was The Case [DeathAfterVisualizingEternity]

The original version to the more popular hit remix is Snoop’s first attempt (and success) at a bonified concept song. Murder Was The Case could just as well be the narration to a masterfully executed horror novel or film, but is ironically a concept theme to an 18 minute short film of the same name directed by Dr. Dre and starring Snoop. The song starts out with Snoop dying in an emergency room after being shot repeatedly, when at the last minute he makes a deal with the devil. The scene then switches to Snoop surviving and living a baller lifestyle just as Satan promised him. Snoop gets more and more greedy, yet never is able to satisfy his growing appetites. At this point his greed becomes too great and his caught up in a prison sentence complete with all the horrors and realities of time to be served. Although the remix has a more cinematic style beat, the original does not fail to have conveyed an aura of tragic dread and dark spiritualism.

7. Serial Killa

It’s time for the Death Row camp to shine all around, as Snoop is joined by then fellow inmates Tha Dogg Pound, RBX and a post car-accident D.O.C. Tha Dogg Pound’s Dat Nigga Daz provides an uncredited co-production on this cold and remorseless hit of murda. Kurupt starts out the track with his trademark savage verbal hits that we have not heard since his impressive debut on Dr. Dre’s The Chronic. Daz then takes the mic dropping his O.G. style verse that then smoothes over to Snoop who lays down a clear warning as to what it is to ***** with the Dogg Pound crew. RBX finishes out the track which also serves as the last time we are to hear him on a new Death Row project.

8. Who Am I (What’s My Name)?

This song served as the first single to Doggystyle. The significance of the song is that like so many other artists who have achieved classic album status Snoop uses his own name as a song premise. Also to be noted is that Snoop Doggy Dogg was one of the first in Hip-Hop to set this trend, which would be followed in later years by such artists as The Notorious B.I.G., Jay-Z, and DMX. Lyrically this was the archetypical hit song of the 90’s with Snoop dropping some of the most memorable, catchiest, and cool lyrics of the time. He even pays homage to his own classic catch phrases from The Chronic’s “Rat-Tat-Tat-Tat” (“Because I never hesitate to put a nigga on his back”) and “Deep Cover (187)” (“Cuz it’s 187 on a motha*****in cop”). Dre pays homage’s of his own to Parliament Funkadelic with samples from “Atomic Dog”, “(Not Just) Knee Deep”, and “Give Up the Funk”. The song was released as a single in late 1993 and eventually earned a gold plaque.

9. For All My Niggaz & My *****es

Definitely the “Coming soon from Death Row Records” advertisement song as Tha Dogg Pound and The Lady Of Rage were given the opportunity to show the world what they could do. Most importantly they would do it without the help of the big boss dogg. Kurupt starts off the track with a lethally potent slow verse which lays the tempo for next couple of verses. What’s to note here more then anything else is the first signs of obvious chemistry between Kurupt and Daz. The two smoothly play off each other, giving us a taste of things to come; which would come out in the smash hit “What Would U Do?” and the entire Dogg Food album two years later. Rage closes out the song with short yet strong verse. Co-production props should go to Daz, who was uncredited for his work on the song.

10. Ain’t No Fun (If The Homies Can’t Have None)

Guess whose back in the motha*****in house! Snoop and his Dogg Pound homies serve up yet another classic joint centering on bustin hoes and passing to the homies. The song that gave Nate Dogg his pre-Regulate popularity is probably one of the most fun tracks off the LP. Nate starts off the track with a short tale about a flip that is so catchy you can’t help but sing along. Kurupt and Snoop both drop entertaining verses, closing out with Warren G dropping his verse and the most hilarious line of the whole album – “So back up ***** because I’m struggling. Just get on your knees and then start jugglin”. The violin and bass heavy instrumental, which contains a sample of Lyn Collins “Think (about it)”, rounds out the song.

11. Doggy Dogg World

Snoop is once again joined by Tha Dogg Pound, but more unexpectedly by 70’s Soul group The Dramatics. The beat is one of the most crispy-clean sounds of the time, let alone the album, taking direct inspiration from Richard Fields’ “If It Ain’t One Thing, It’s Another”. Snoop starts Doggystyle’s third single by addressing the cheap Snoop Dogg imitators that were floating around at the time. Kurupt however steals the show with an impressive display of lyrical talent that would only be rivaled by his own verse on “Stranded On Death Row”, released only a year earlier. Although Daz does not have the lyrical stamina of Snoop or Kurupt, he more then makes up for it with his performing presence and slick rhyming savvy. Doggy Dogg World is uncharacteristically smoother then any of other tracks on the album but definitely ensures its niche.

12. Gz And Hustlaz

This track is without a doubt the single greatest freestyled track in Death Row Records history. Snoop’s unscripted endurance trial flows bar for bar in an almost flawless fashion, and does not skimp on the albums trend of smoothly executed, catchy, and memorable phrases such as “If you want some, get some, bad enough, take some”. The beat itself was taken entirely from Bernard Wright’s “Haboglabotribin”, with some slight modifications, and reworked with Snoop taking advantage in every way possible concerning the beat. It is as if Snoop’s unique and smooth flow was made to be performed over this type of instrumental. Although not a hit, Gz And Hustlaz is quality material.

13. Pump Pump

Doggystyle comes to a close with the albums most hardcore and intense song. The beat itself is the high point of the song. Its sound would be at home in the goriest scene of the sickest slasher film. This would definitely be Dre’s cherry on the top to a dramatically intense themed album, which could be considered the epitome of a hardcore rap album. Snoop drops his first two cold and remorseless verses right before introducing the final guest to the album – a very young Hershey Loc who too spits with a cold and vicious demeanor. All in all the song serves as a climatic end to an epic album.

The final score? A well deserved 5 out of 5 classic. If The Chronic changed the sound of Hip-Hop, Doggystyle cemented the sound and ensured its reign for the next decade. Everything about this time in Snoop’s life took its toll on the album and is the reason why it is the best known and most classically treasured projects of Snoop Doggy Dogg’s career. In a few years he would be known as: one of Amerikaz most wanted alongside his lable-mate Tupac, The Doggfather, and eventually the Big Boss Dogg, but the majority of his fans will always remember Snoop as the young pimp who was doin up the game Doggystyle.

Snoop Dogg – The Last Meal

Snoop Dogg - The Last MealSNOOP DOGG “Tha Last Meal” Released December 5th 2000

LABEL: No-Limit Records & Dogghouse Records

01. Intro (1.20)
02. Hennesey N Buddah w/Kokane (4.12)
03. Snoop Dogg (What’s My Name Pt2) (4.03)
04. True Lies w/Kokane (4.01)
05. Wrong Idea w/Bad Azz, Kokane, Lil’ HD (4.14)
06. Go Away w/Kokane (4.52)
07. Set It Off w/MC Ren, Ice Cube, The Lady Of Rage & Nate Dogg (4.52)
08. Stacey Adams w/Kokane (4.35)
09. Lay Low w/Master P, Nate Dogg, Butch Cassidy, Goldie Loc & Tray Dee (3.43)
10. Bring It On w/Suga Free & Kokane (4.17)
11. Game Court SKIT- Mac Minista (2.10)
12. Issues (2.36)
13. Brake Fluid (Biiittch pump yo brakes) w/Kokane (5.56)
14. Ready 2 Ryde w/Eve (4.21)
15. Losin’ Control w/Butch Cassidy & Soopafly (4.09)
16. I Can’t Swim (4.17)
17. Leave Me Alone (4.12)
18. Back Up Off Me w/Master P & Mr Magic (5.15)
19. Ya’ll Gone Miss Me w/Kokane (4.15) 

PRODUCTION: Dr Dre, Master P, Soopafly, Battlecat, Timbaland, Scott Storch, Jelly Roll, Meech Wells, Michael Elizondo, Studio Tone, Casey Wilson & Carlos Stephens.

BILLBOARD 200 2001 No.4 “Tha Last Meal”
Top R&B/Hip Hop Albums 2001 No.1 “Tha Last Meal”
Hot Rap Singles 2001 No.8 “Lay Low” & “Snoop Dogg”
Rhythmic Top 40 2001 No.17 “Lay Low”

Snoop Dogg born Calvin Broadus in Long Beach California on October 20th 1972 was introduced to the game called rap in the early 90’s by veteran rapper/producer Dr Dre. The pair got together through Dr Dre’s stepbrother, Warren G, where Snoop later became one of the biggest rap stars on the Deathrow Records Label founded by Marion ‘Suge’ Knight & Dr Dre himself. After high success with his debut album in 1993 “Doggystyle” Snoop became well known in the music industry making a name for himself world wide. The second album released on Deathrow in 1996 “Doggfather” lacked the same potential as his debut and the Dogg was in desperate need to revamp his career. In early 1997 Snoop made an appearance on Silkk The Shocker’s “Charge It To the Game” and later appeared on the “I Got The Hook Up” Soundtrack to later go on to sign with the ghetto Bill Gates and Colonel of the tank, Master P. At this time the No-Limit Records tank was on full charge and the signing of already well known rappers such as Mystikal had Master P on the top of the rap game. Snoop departed Deathrow in 1997 and had his first album drop on No-Limit Records in 1998 entitled “Da Game Is To Be Sold Not To Be Told”. The success of this album later saw Snoop regain his reputation that he had once lost in his last days at Deathrow Records with classic tracks such as “Still A G Thang” making the album fresh once again. The No-Limit Tank was rolling now more than ever and the once small and underground Dirty South label had now reached audiences across the globe making it worth millions. Snoop felt the vapours as his career shot up again and critics became much more suprized with the adapting of the LBC native to the Dirty South of New Orleans Southern hospitality. The year that followed had Snoop re-unite with Dr Dre after nearly 6 years on his second album on the tank “No-Limit Topp Dogg” in 1999. The pair had been always looked upon as the greatest team in rap history and was once compared to the legendary dueo of rap legends Eric.B & Rakim. Everywhere fans and media in the music industry praised the move and had high expectations from the LP which resulted in one of the best Snoop albums since his first “Doggystyle” debut in 1993. The album was packed with features on all aspects with production from Dr Dre to DJ Quik and hits such as “***** Please” featuring Nate Dogg & Xzibit made this album a must for Snoop fans.

In late 2000 Big Snoop D.O Double Gizzle came back with his third and final No-Limit album “Tha Last meal”. This album saw the departure of Snoop Dogg from the tank as he had paid the cost to be the boss of his own label Dogghouse Records which was in works with Tha Eastsidaz, which consisted of Tray Deee & Goldie Loc, at the time. The album saw Dr Dre produce a few tracks and mix most of the album up and the features once again in this album were just as good as the last. The album was full of Westcoast funk and P-Funk/G-Funk style of beats as Snoop loves best as most of his attitude as a gangsta return with the ability to pimp the game at the same time. The No-Limit tank slowly faded after this album and Master P found that one by one his soldiers were dismissed.

The album starts off with a banging track produced by the one and only Dr Dre “Hennesey N Buddah”. The track has Dre all over it and the hook by Kokane is tight as the Dogg’s raps and flow are pure gangsta, the best he has performed in a long time. The beat by Dr Dre sounds like it has come straight from the Aftermath Classic Shelf where he picked up the beats for his “2001” album released that year also. This song comes up as one of the best on not only the album but in Snoop’s rap career. Another highlight track by Dr Dre is “Lay Low” which features an extreme line up of artists such as Nate Dogg, Butch Cassidy, Master P, Tray Deee & Goldie Loc. The beat once again is a classic for Dr Dre and the callaboration of these artists on a Dre beat is a multi-platinum hit. Snoop raps on point with his fellow Eastsidaz and even Master P cant resist hittin’ the beat. Nate Dogg spins the hook with his gangsta harmony and Butch Cassidy comes through higher than Snoop, literally, we would imagine. The Dr Dre and Snoop Dogg connection is unstoppable in this song and it would be great to see more of these beats from the history making dueo as this song does make history. Snoop raps through the track with real aggression as he barks on the mic:”Lay low nobody move until’ i say so/Limo tint rollin’ deep like the president. See I dont go to clubs I never chase a biiatch/Im here to bang that gangsta shit til’ the apocalypse. We call it stress some of yall call it chocolate/Return of the top dogg and aint’ no stoppin’ it. Whatever the case I aint’ tryin’ to catch it/Lay low blow big dope and slang records”. At the same time Snoop puts some comedy into his album with “True Lies” with Kokane as he has Ex-President Bill Clinton’s recording of his confession to the affair he had with Monica Lewinski, Snoop ask’s him whether or not he *****ed that *****? The beat done by Dr Dre is phat and the beat is slow yet funky with a little Dre tweaks and sqweaks but the rapping by Snoop is too layed back making this a problem in the album.

As the album continues we discover the special production appearance’s by Timbaland, mostly known for his work with the late Aaliyah and up to date music with Missy Elliot. On the single “Snoop Dogg”, the sequel to 1993’s “What’s My Name”, Timbaland lays a typical beat that only he can do and as unique that it may sound the beat is very catchy along with the chorus. Snoop actually raps a little too smooth again and very laid back as he usually does these days. The track is a club banger though and does get the crowd moving. Timbaland also has the privledge of lacing the beat on the jam packed featured “Set It Off”. The track features veterans MC Ren & Ice Cube and also has Nate Dogg with some gangsta shit and The Lady Of Rage step into the beat with her ‘Afro Puffs’. The beat is very funky and has a good rhythim to it along with the hard rapping performed by all the artists. Ice Cube keeps the song beating with his hook and Timbaland keeps the unique sound fresh & funky. Jelly Roll puts in work on another highlight track “Wrong Idea” with Bad Azz, Kokane & Lil’ HD on the hook. The beat is real Westcoast and Bad Azz rips the mic apart as the LBC get together for a great song that keeps the party up all night no doubt. The raps by Snoop are also gangsta and his flow amazingly is on line with the Jelly beat as it Rolls through. Other’s Jelly Roll hits his sticky fingers on are “Bring It On” with Suga Free pimpin his tight lyrics and Kokane on the hooks again. The beat is quite funky and the raps are pretty good on Snoop’s half. “I Can’t Swim” is a very weird track done by Jelly but the actual beat itself has got an addictive sound making it sound hard and Snoop helps the George Clinton sampled beat to be a P/G-Funk hook up all in one song with gangsta influence.

The Westcoast wouldn’t be complete without Battlecat so obviously he done a track or two which were tight beats but lacked the full effort by Snoop to make it a banger. Tracks such as “Stacey Adams” have a nice mellow Battlecat beat but are spoiled by Kokane’s singing and Snoop’s talking rap. “Leave Me Alone” is a much better beat though Snoop once again ruins all the Battlecat beats especially this one in particular as he sings throughout the track sounding high and there is a feeling that he may even of just sang the song without writing any lyrics, very poor lyrics and one of the downfalls of the album. On another note the album has an uplift from Meech Wells who always seems to put good production down for Snoop and helps his lyrics similar to what Dr Dre manages to pull off. “Issues” & “Go Away” are all a highlights for Meech and Snoop helps the tracks at full Westcoast rhyming & flow as you would expect. “Go Away” does lose a little credit in the lyrics department though as Snoop repeats the 1st verse again on the 3rd.

The album is hit with some Scott Storch beats such as “Brake Fluid” featuring Kokane, nice beat and funky but song lyrically is poor. “Ready 2 Ryde” with Eve makes up for the failure of the other Storch beats as Eve raps real hard and has mad flow. Snoop keeps it gangsta also and the beat has a great touch to it. Storch does produce a nice G-Funk beat to end the album on “Ya’ll Gone Miss Me” featuring Kokane which has Snoop pretty much rap about his time at the tank and the way his life has gone the beat is slow but funked out, officially a goodbye song to the Colonel and the NL tank. Master P did get a turn though with Beats By The Pound C-Los aka Carlos Stephens does a Dirty South Club beat “Back Up Off Me” with P and Magic on the beat, which Snoops voice is clearly not suited for and the bass is too soft for a Dirty South Club beat. Snoop had one for the South and No-Limit fans and also managed to DPGC with Soopafly touching on “Losin’ Control” with Butch Cassidy, a slow beat but Priest does do the job as usual with both raps and production and pulls through for this finale.

The album was 80% full of P & G-Funk style beats and the special touch of Dr Dre, Timbaland, Battlecat, Jelly Roll & Meech Wells most notably make this album a mixed bag of tracks. Snoop has some really tight songs in this album and considering it was his last No-Limit album it has had some work done to it to make it bang as much as possible. His lyrics/flow & raps in general were up and down and the only way he performed good was if he was with a producer he was comfortable with. The Dr Dre beats are banging though and are a must. Its good to hear Dre & Snoop doing their thing but he really needed to cut back on the Kokane, well you know what im saying….overall it was a pretty good album but not his best so in saying that the callabos in all aspects yes were tight….

Rating: 3.5


Snoop Doggy Dogg – Dead Man Walking

Snoop Doggy Dogg - Dead man walkingAround the same time Snoop was ready to drop “Tha Last Meal”, Suge and the staff of Death Row went into the vaults and released this album of previously unreleased tracks by tha Doggfather.

1. May I ft. Lil Malik – Production: Soopafly

Snoop has a nice flow on this track over a Soopafly beat. Reminiscent of tha Doggfather album. Snoop gives a few good shout outs in the lyrics to the other inmates on Death Row. The production could be a little better but it’s a nice speed to match Snoop on this track. The downfall is the chorus.

2. C Walkin – Production: Big Hutch/ Myrion

Hutch lays out a hard beat and Snoop gives a good laid back flow. While the track is nothing to party to it’s good to sit back and chill with. At times it reminds you of a young Snoop, but leaves you hanging as you almost expect him to let loose like he used to. Still not a bad track by any means.

3. Head Doctor ft. Swoop G – Production: Kurt Kobane

The single off the album on probably the best track. A nice beat, good verses by both Snoop and Swoop G, tight production throughout.

4. Hit Rocks – Production: Snoop/ DJ Pooh

Another track that reminds you of tha Doggfather with it’s bouncing beat. The production is definetely on point. A few recycled lyrics but it works well with Snoop’s flow. Takes a bit to get used to the chorus, but doesn’t let you down.

5. Tommy Boy ft. Daz – Production: Daz

As much as you may expect a Snoop/Dillinger collaboration to be off the hook, the beat is a little too slow. Not horrible flows but nothing about the track grabs your attention.

6. Change Gone Come – Production: Snoop/Soopafly/LT Hutton

Slow beginning with a weak jingle but Snoop starts to rip this song up. The beat makes you nod your head but when the chorus starts it takes the song down with it, you wish Snoop would just keep going. Would be a really good track if remixed with new chorus.

7. Too Black – Production: Snoop/LT Hutton

Slow flow to this track, it sounds like Snoop is storytelling but the lyrics go nowhere. Beat is repetitive and slow. It’s a great track if you feel like hearing Snoop mumble for 5 minutes straight like he just smoked 6 pounds of weed.. How many times does he have to remind us that he’s Snoop Dogg?

8. Gangsta Walk ft. Tha Dogg Pound – Production: Daz

A pretty good beat laid down by Dilli. Kurupt spits first and puts down an average verse for him. Snoop drops a decent spot. Daz uses much the same lyrics he did in “Gangsta Rap” on Dogg Pound 2002. Overall a decent track.

9. County Blues ft. KV – Production: Daz/Big Hutch

The beat gives the feeling of being in an old county jail in the south, with the harmonica going. Snoop gives a good spot about life in the pen and the gang life on the inside. An excellent chorus, but the skit in the middle of the song takes away from the tracks massive potential.

10. I Will Survive ft. Technique, Kurupt, KV – Production: Soopafly

Technique comes out of the gate spitting over a smooth Soopafly beat. Snoop slows it down, Technique then speeds it up, Snoop slows it down again. Kurupt gives a good chorus to match Snoop but there is no set tempo to the song. Snoop and Technique didn’t match well on this one.

11. My Favorite Color ft. Big Hutch – Production: Big Hutch

Hutch lays down a G-Funk beat but it still lacks something. Hutch’s verse matches his beat. Snoop does allright over the beat but you get the feeling the other members of Above the Law should step in and save the track. Tight chorus.

12. Me and My Doggs ft. Technique – Production: LT Hutton/Snoop

This beat is crazy, but oh wait, that’s because we already know it from tha Doggfather album when it was already a tight track. Recycled track gives us nothing we already haven’t heard. Unfortunetly, it’s also one of the best songs on this album.

Overall this album makes you wonder about the value of the infamous Death Row vaults. Did someone accidentely grab the discard bin? The best track “Head Doctor” would also be the worst track on “Doggystyle” or average on “Tha Doggfather”. The beats are average, the lyrics decent at best. Album is short, 12 tracks, be thankful for that.

Rating 2/5