On a cold, quiet Monday night deep in the heart of Houston, a party was happening. Not a Christmas party but a "Gangsta Party" as Hip-hop legend Snoop Dogg brought his I Wanna Thank Me Tour to the House of Blues.
Although Snoop has sported multiple names and personas over his lengthy career, the Long Beach Crip, dressed in his usual "khakis with a crease", gold chains, and blacked-out Locs, representing his West Coast, gangster-rap roots.
Snoop skyrocketed to fame in 1992, at the beginning of his rap career, after being discovered and featured with one of the most notable names in hip-hop at the time, Dr. Dre. The former N.W.A. member would feature Snoop on the majority of the songs on his solo debut, The Chronic, creating the formulaic recipe that would craft such hits as “Nothin' But A 'G' Thang“ and push the album toward a million sales within the first week of release.
Now more than 20 years and 35 million album sales later, Snoop Dogg is promoting his 17th studio album, I Wanna Thank Me. Though the acclaimed artist has changed up his releases in the past, moving through different genres such as gospel and EDM, his latest is back to the classic Snoop Dogg his fans love. Smooth, funky beats, mixed with stylish production, have come together in an old-school head-bobbing project.
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Kicking off the night's set with I Wanna Thank Me's opening track "What You Talkin' Bout", Snoop slowly bounced around the stage, shimmering as his pounds of jewelry and diamond- encrusted microphone reflected back at the crowd.
The rapper moved through his remarkably long set list of hits ranging from his first solo singles such as "Gin N' Juice" and "Who Am I? (What's My Name)" to newer popular guest appearances like on comedian/rapper Lil Duval's charting single "Smile (Living My Best Life)." An eye-catching display complete with pole-dancers on each side of the stage, a dog mascot as an added hypeman, and guest appearances by Bad Azz and Houston’s own Devin The Dude, brought the energy of the room to the max. Fans of all ages and ethnicities, drank, danced, smoked and partied through the rapper's 30+ song set, only taking time out for the marijuana musician to take a smoke break.
“Alright hol’ up, hol’ up” exclaimed Snoop’s DJ, “this man has too many hits. I’m looking at the set list right now and we ain’t gonna make it though the whole thing at this rate, so you take a seat and have a smoke while I rock with the crowd for a minute.”
The DJ then ran though a quick mix of more of Snoop’s singles such as “Beautiful” “Life of Da Party” and his feature on “Still Dre.” Also taking time to pay respect to some of his fallen friends, Snoop dedicated and sang along to songs from Easy-E, Tupac, Biggie Smalls, and Nipsey Hustle.
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“Take a real good look at this face” exclaimed the rapper as he removed his sunglasses for the first time of the night, “Because I will be back. Shout out to all my fans in here tonight that have been rocking with me since ’92, Houston was the first place I performed at and I’m grateful to be here today.”
Snoop closed out the set with Al Green's “Let’s Stay Together” and even stuck around and sang most of the song with the crowd as the venue emptied.
1. What You Talkin Bout
2. Next Episode
3. Nuthin But a G Thank
4. Bitch Please
6. P.I.M.P. (Remix)
7. Tha Shiznit
8. Wrong Idea Feat. Bad Azz
10. Sensual Seduction
11. I Wanna Love You
12. Loosen’ Control
13. Smile(Living My Best Life)
14. Fuck You Feat. Devin the Dude
15. What A Jon Feat Devin the Dude
16. I Wanna Rock
17. Snoop’s Upside Ya Head
18. DJ Intermission
19. Lay Low
20. Drop It Like It’s Hot
21. Take Me Away
22. All We Do Is Win
23. My 6-4 (Easy E Tribute)
24. Hypnotize(Notorious B.I.G. Tribute)
25. Gangsta Party (Tupac Tribute)
26. Gin N’ Juice
27. Maze - Look at California (Nipsey Hustle Tribute)
28. One Blood, One Cuzz
29. Who Am I? (What’s My Name)
30. Young, Wild, & Free
31. Al Green - Let’s Stay Together