The tragic passing of both Tupac Shakur and Notorious B.I.G. arguably changed the course of Hip Hop and according to noted West Coast artist Snoop Lion, the deaths of both rappers opened up the lanes for several of today’s successful rappers.
While speaking with Power 105.1's The Breakfast Club, Snoop stated that the absence of both rappers opened up “certain lanes” in Hip Hop that would have not been made available had the rappers been alive today.
“You know what, I had that discussion two or three times and I always come to the conclusion that a lot of artists wouldn’t be as big as they are if they were here. And that was with no disrespect. It’s just certain lanes opened up for artists when they were gone…On the bar a lot of rappers wouldn’t be where they are. I can’t say they names because I love ‘em all, but certain rappers that had big years, big albums,” Snoop explained. “When he was gone, that wouldn’t have been there. When he was gone, that wouldn’t have been there. That would have been his lane and that would have been his lane. And you wasn’t stepping on Biggie or Tupac lane.”
Despite this week’s release of Snoop Lion’s reggae album, Reincarnated, he’s still found himself defending his switch from a Hip Hop artist to a reggae artist.
Before speaking on his “right to” move to another genre, Snoop commented on the Mind Gardens program he brought to Jamaica, which teaches those in various communities how to grow produce they can later use for themselves and also sell.
“A lot of people come to Jamaica, steal they culture, run off and make money off of it. So, I get that. Jamaica is a very poor country. There’s not a lot of opportunity. So, I get that,” said Snoop in a video posted on RapRadar.com. “And then the musicians they treasure and they respect what they have and that’s theirs, that’s their reggae music…They all respect my move man because I built this man. Twenty-something years on that Hip Hop tip, doing what I do. I got the right to step out and do what I do.”