Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg and Tupac at Coachella: Gangsta Contemplations

And so the buzz this week emanates from the Coachella Music and Arts Festival where Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg headlined an absolutely outstanding lineup of music from a wide variety of genres. It's not that Dre and Snoop did not have a body of work that's got folk talking... Certainly the duo deserves a headlining spot at this music festival attended by tens of thousands over a two weekend period.  I am impressed that the Festival has grown in stature so much that not only was it massively attended live at Coachella, but they added millions to their audience through live streams to YouTube.

Dre and Snoop did not disappoint as they delivered hit after hit with flawless precision. They dedicated an entire segment of their show to their fallen colleague Nate Dogg, joined onstage by fellow G-funk producers Daz and Kurupt. And while the litany of hit music was presented in an outstanding manner, the talk of the town is that the duo reincarnated the late Tupac Shakur via hologram that placed the legendary rapper right on stage with them. It was something to see!!!!

Tupac's holographic appearance has generated everything for shock to awe. In fact, as I look at the video, I am convinced that the crowd is rendered speechless as Tupac rises from the stage. It is unbelievable!!!

I know that from the start, Dr. Dre has been an innovator. His time as one of the infamous NWA followed by his litany of hits at Death Row and and AfterMath has made him one of hiphop's hall of famers. Snoop Dogg is also a hall of famer with major hits under his belt and a plethora of creative collaborations that have made him one of America's pop culture icons.  Tupac is immortal as he left behind a tragic story and a tremendous body of work in music, television and film. So the question is not if the brothas are innovative and creative. It's how innovative and creative could they get?

Now this is not the first time Dre and Snoop have been the arbiters of creative shock and awe. I remember the 1994, Soul Train Music Awards. The Shrine Auditorium was the place to be as black music's best and brightest gathered to honor it's own. Amid the controversy of the day regarding their music, it was unprecedented that Don Cornelius would invite gangsta rappers to his otherwise elegant stage. It was then that we witnessed what kind of showmen Dre and Snoop would be as they hit the stage in a '63 lowrider Impala, hit some switches and proceeded to rip "Nuthin but a G-Thang Baybay!!!" It was off the chain and a technological marvel at that time that had tongues wagging for weeks.....

Now when we examine the Coachella performance, we really see an entire show that was full of technological wizardry and bigtime firepower. And yes. Snoop and Dre served their body of work - hit after hit, but we would be remiss if we did not celebrate the performances of Eminem, 50 Cent Wiz Khalifa and more. This concert set was fantastic to say the least! You can enjoy it below.

At Coachella this weekend, we witnessed the unimaginable. Snoop Dogg and Dr. Dre resurrecting Tupac. They performed together and interacted right there live onstage at Coachella. Now THAT's gangsta!!!

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