Snoop Dogg

  • Rapper and songwriter born Calvin Broadus Jr. in 1971 in Long Beach California.
  • His parents gave him the nickname Snoopy because of his love of Snoopy from Peanuts, and because he had some resemblance to the cartoon character. He sang at his church as a child, and by sixth grade he was rapping. In high school, he rapped in the hallways, drawing big crowds – he realized that he had a talent that others would enjoy. His activity in street gangs and drugs got him into frequent trouble with the law, and he was often jailed as a teenager. He recorded homemade tapes of his rapping, and one somehow ended up with soon-to-be iconic rap artist and producer Dr. Dre. Dr. Dre had Snoop Dogg audition, and Snoop was signed to a recording contract in 1992.
  • His first stage name was Snoop Doggy Dogg. In 1993, Dogg released his debut album, Doggystyle. It was a huge success, certified 4x platinum and selling over 11 million copies worldwide. The singles What’s My Name? and Gin and Juice topped the rap chart and both reached #8 on the Hot 100. Gangsta rap had arrived five years earlier, and suddenly Snoop Doggy Dogg had become the voice of West Coast rap music.
  • In August 1993, Snoop was arrested for purportedly driving the escape vehicle after the murder of a rival gang member. He was acquitted, and he announced that he was stepping away from the gangsta lifestyle, for fear of an assassination. But he continued to get in trouble, often because of his love of cannabis and firearms. He’s been arrested at least a dozen times in his life, and he has been temporarily banned from entering the UK, Australia and Norway.
  • His second album, Tha Doggfighter, was released in 1994. It showed a “softer” approach to gansta rap. It topped the Billboard album chart, and was certified 2x platinum. The single Snoop’s Upside Ya Head reached #5 on the Hot Rap chart. Two more albums were released in the 90s, using his name Snoop Dogg. They both topped the R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart, with the singles Still A G Thang and Woof both peaking at #3 on the Hot Rap Singles chart.
  • His first three albums from the 00s were certified platinum, and in 2004 he had his only #1 hit on the Hot 100 – Drop It Like It’s Hot (featuring Pharrell). He also had three other top ten songs on the Rap Singles Chart, with Beautiful reaching #2 on the Rap chart and #6 on the Hot 100.
  • Snoop Dogg continued to be prolific with new music. Between 2005 and 2020, he released ten studio albums, including a gospel album and a reggae album. He also released dozens of mixtapes, compilations, soundtrack albums, EPs and collaborative albums. He was the featured artist on over 100 singles by various artists over the years – most notably, Hot 100 #1 hits I Wanna Love You by Akon and California Gurls by Katy Perry.
  • He developed into a cultural icon while maintaining his stoner persona. He had roles in over 40 films, often portraying himself. Add to that another 40+ appearances in television, including the host of the game show The Joker’s Wild, and an on-going role in a variety show that co-stars Martha Stewart called Martha and Snoop’s Potluck Dinner Party. He appears to be immune to cancel culture, as he continues to be extremely popular despite his checkered past, and as he turns 50 years old in 2021, he hasn’t stopped being Snoop Dogg.
  • Snoop Dogg holds the record for the most number of Grammy nominations without a win – he has 16 nominations but has yet to take home the trophy. Here’s his video of Gin and Juice.

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