Snoop Lion still roars

Snoop Lion still roars

He has made his name as one of the most distinctive personalities in the American hip-hop scene. In the process, he has been through several monikers, from Snoop Doggy Dogg to Snoop Dogg.

Last year, the 41-year-old who is born Calvin Cordozar Broadus Jr. did what some zoos in China might do - pass off a Dogg as a Lion. He announced to the world that he has undergone a transformation and would now be known as Snoop Lion.

The name change, prompted by a trip to Jamaica and his conversion to the Rastafari movement, reflected a change in his musical direction as well, from hip-hop to reggae. Rastafari is a spiritual ideology started in Jamaica in the 1930s and is closely associated with reggae music, thanks to its most famous proponent, the late reggae icon Bob Marley.

He released Reincarnated, his first reggae album and his 12th overall, in April this year.

Whatever his inner animal, he will be here as one of the headliners of the two-day music festival Singha Presents 1 World Music Festival at Marina Barrage on Sept 20 and 21. It has been two years since he last performed here at the Mnet Asian Music Awards.

He is set to perform on the second night, with acts such as electronic music veteran Moby, Malaysian singer-songwriter Yuna and home-grown percussion band Wicked Aura.

The rapper, notorious for his brushes with the law and his early association with the 1990s gangster rap movement, has since become a pop culture mainstay. He has had roles in more than 30 movies, including 2001 crime drama Training Day, and many appearances on TV shows, from animated series South Park to HBO comedy-drama Entourage.

His gangly appearance is as distinctive as his speech patterns. In an e-mail interview with Life!, Snoop, who has three teenaged children, even has an idiosyncratic way of writing.

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