We have to admit, when we first heard that rapper, actor, entrepreneur, film producer and weed ambassador Snoop Dogg had changed his name to Snoop Lion and was planning on releasing a reggae album, we thought it was just another wacky scheme by Calvin Broadus. But we have to admit to being somewhat compelled and a bit surprised by the trailer for “Reincarnated,” the documentary about Snoop’s journey to Jamaica and the making of his upcoming album of the same name.
The Vice Films movie joins Snoop as he heads to the tropical island to record, only to fall into an unexpected spiritual awakening that clearly left him changed. “I didn’t want to be Snoop Dogg on a reggae track…I wanted to bury Snoop Dogg and become Snoop Lion, but I didn’t know that until I went to the temple and received the name Snoop Lion from the Nyabingi priest,” he said. “From that moment on, I started to understand why I was there and was able to create something magical in this [Reincarnated] project…something I haven’t done before in my career.”
And what the trailer for the doc makes clear — and what we often forget — is that Snoop saw some very hard times early on in his career, particularly at the height of gangsta rap and whole East Coast/West Coast battle, and this new musical/spiritual endeavor seems to be a way to shake off those demons to some degree. As for the music, while the thought of Snoop going reggae seems potentially frightening, it is pretty exciting that he lined up Diplo to produce, which promises something a bit more cutting edge than your standard tunes in the genre.
“Reincarnated” will premiere at TIFF in September. Snoop Lion’s first single “La La La” is on iTunes now. Watch below.