“I’m not the one, n***a you could call me the two, Bob Marley reincarnated, pupils dilated emancipated, concentrated, debated, rated many times.” Snoop Dogg, “It Blows My Mind” (The Neptunes Present… Clones, 2003)
That seed Snoop Dogg planted in your mind in ’03 about being reincarnated as Bob Marley is officially bearing fruit. He’s taken on a new alias; Snoop Lion, which serves as the name for the Rastafarian persona he’s evolved into. Immersing himself in Rastafarian culture has played a major part in his metamorphasis: growing dreadlocks, recording in Jamaica with Diplo, and even the cuisine have influenced him, sort of the way method actors lose themselves in a role for a movie (i.e. Daniel Day Lewis, Heath Ledger). In lieu of Snoop Lion’s forthcoming album, Reincarnation, today he’s holding a private press conference at Miss Lily‘s, which will be broadcast live here at 5PM EST.
The timing of Reincarnation lends itself to a bit of numerology. Back in 2003, when Snoop uttered his powerful lyrics over Chad and Pharrell’s intoxicating sound, he triggered something in the universe where, nine years later, he would be channeling Jamaican vibes. Whether or not Snoop planned this, the title Reincarnation adds a new layer to the theme of life and death which is celebrated through a West Indian tradition known as Nine Night. From Jamaicans to Dominicans, the families of the lost ones often spend nine days dining together, reminiscing with joy instead of grief. Through this time, it’s believed that the spirit moves into the grave, its final resting place. Not one to put a downer on the energy behind Snoop’s new release, the association with Nine Night is just a theory. However, his visible ties to Rasta culture are definitely authentic, down to his new surname, Lion. He is bearing his allegiance to the Lion of Judah, seen on the Rastafarian flag, which symbolizes a new beginning—reincarnation.