Dogg: God Bless My Enemies
MTV: "Tha Last Meal" is your last album on No Limit.
Is that a sense of freedom for you?
Snoop: Yeah, but I got to thank Master P for creating
that freedom vibe for me. I always had freedom. From
the first day I was on No Limit, he showed how to use
it and how to get it and how to distribute it, and how
to make quality records and not focus on the fact that
I am free, just focus on making good records. That's
all I've done ever since the moment I got on No Limit.
Every record I've done has gotten better, and I believe
this is my best record yet.
MTV: What would you say is the biggest thing you actually
learned from being on the No Limit label, or from Master
Snoop: That you should believe in what you are. Everyone
over there, he made them all superstars, and that's
how I feel about my own label and the artists I try
to develop. I believe in them enough that if I put in
all my time and energy, then the whole world will believe
in them, just like Master P did with me and all the
other No Limit soldiers.
MTV: You have your own label now. Is that something
you've been thinking about for years, but it just kind
of started coming about?
Snoop: I was able to execute it while I was on No Limit
because I saw how P took a small label and made it into
a big label, and I was a big name so I felt if I took
a small label and made it into a big label and a big
name and a corporation with good music, it would be
cool. So I started chipping away, putting together the
Eastsidaz project, and it worked, so I'm going to continue
to do it as an avenue for new talent.
MTV: How much input did P have on the new record?
Snoop: None as far as direction, but as inspiration
about 100 percent. Because getting away from Death Row
is what he helped me do, so it made me want to create
the best album possible. When you look 15 years down
the line, you could see that just like I created Death
Row classic records, now I look forward to creating
Doghouse classic records, constantly building my own
MTV: A lot of the No Limit albums we've been listening
to since the first kind of had that distinct sound,
like a little bit of that Southern sound. We kind of
got a little hint of that on your last two records.
Snoop: I kind of realized in the middle of the last
record that it was like an 85 percent west coast record.
The first one was 100 percent Southern, so after the
second record I started getting Dre involved, getting
all my producers and establishing my record label and
getting my production team together. So once I started
coming back to the west and getting around in the environment
and making records, before you knew it I had an album
MTV: Did some of that kind of evolve for you since you
live out here, and you hear their stuff and reach out
to them, or is it just that you happen to run into each
Snoop: I think it's more that we admire what we do.
I'm a fan of the game, so any time you got two people
who make great music and they see each other, it's either
going to be one thing or another. Nine times out of
ten when I hang around people who make great music,
we usually end up going to the studio.
MTV: How many tracks did Dre actually produce on this
Snoop: The intro, and three tracks.
MTV: What do you think of a lot of these pop stars kind
of biting off hip-hop trends?
Snoop: It's cool because that's what we do, inspire
people. Everybody is inspired by somebody. I'm inspired
by the macks of the '70s, the players and hustlers and
strong politicians that were in the streets.
MTV: One of the more interesting things I was reading
about Doggie Style records, all your artists get 100
percent of the song rights. How?
Snoop: That's what it's about. If you write the song
and you do your thing, you're suppose to get paid for
it. I feel like I shouldn't rob or continue to rape
artists like the system is set up to do if I can give
MTV: How have you been able to find time to write lyrics
for this album, as you've been doing movies?
Snoop: S***, I'm a workaholic. When ya sleeping, I'm
working. I keep it cracking. Before I went on tour I
had four songs, then I made some more songs, and before
you know it I had 20 songs and chose from them.
MTV: Who do you find yourself talking about and wanting
to write about?
Snoop: I'm just having a ball, the whole record, dealing
with issues that affect me. I always put the cold shoulder
like it didn't effect me, but it bothers me so I had
to speak on it, and I'm having a great time doing it.
MTV: What kind of issues?
Snoop: You know, a lot of people speak bad about me
and put out records about me, which is a small situation
but it's so big to me because I'm trying to kick positively
and somebody tries to block me. I try to keep everything
moving and let it slide but it comes a point where you
get backed to a wall you got to speak on it. I mean
as I get older, I get wiser, and I feel like sharing
my knowledge and not try to hurt people nowadays.
MTV: What does the name "Tha Last Meal" mean to you?
Snoop: The last time these motherf***ers are going to
eat of me. It's not negative in any way, it's just said
like that because I appreciate everything that was done
for me as an artist in this music industry, but a lot
of this sh** I did and I didn't make nearly as much
as the companies made off of me. So it's like the last
time ya going to eat off of me, because now I'm going
to become a company and see what it feel like to eat
off of Snoop Dogg.
MTV: How do you feel about Death Row putting out an
album of all your songs, "Dead Man Walking"?
Snoop: God bless my enemies. I can't really focus on
what they doing. Why is my life the focus of your life?
Why is my life the answer to your life? As you see I
don't really pay attention to them. I try to do my thing.
I don't make records about them or make any comments.
It's just them constantly tagging me, make references
to me, trying to pull me out of my mode. I'm a peaceful,
positive role model making records. What they try to
do is take me down the back roads of where I use to
be. Let's keep it real, ya keep doing what you're doing
and I'll keep doing what I'm doing.
MTV: I am assuming that they are not going to give you
any money at all for your words or your work.
Snoop: It's not a thing at all, because that's dirty
money. I'm over here making clean money. I don't even
want anything to do with that, they can do what they
want to do, because what I'm doing is establishing myself
for me and representing myself for me, as me. And I'm
actually getting respected for who I am and what I do,
and I really like that.
MTV: When someone says Tupac, what do you think of?
Snoop: All the good times that we had together, and
I look at certain people, how they view him and how
they viewed him when he was here, and I look at the
real and I look at the fake, and I see who really cared
about him and who didn't.
MTV: What do you think is his biggest contribution to
the hip-hop community and culture?
Snoop: Awareness. Tupac gave hip-hop awareness through
his death. It was sad, but it made everybody aware of
the fact that if we want to keep this rap game alive,
we got to work with each other, because working against
each other is always gonna open the door for violence.
MTV: Do you hear any of Allen Iverson's stuff?
Snoop: That's my homeboy. I'm down with Allen. I'm down
with anyone who's down with this hip-hop movement in
a positive way or negative way, it don't matter. Because
the whole thing is, he's only rapping, it's an expression.
He's a basketball player. He ain't done any thing that
he's saying he's doing. You know a lot of people offend
other people everyday by small things that they say.
At least he's man enough to say it.
MTV: He changed his lyrics.
Snoop: The NBA made him do that. You got to understand,
he's in a league that he can't control. He's not just
a rapper, he's a basketball player first, and that's
what is more important to him. But they couldn't do
us like that. They couldn't make us change our lyrics.
We don't give a f*** about what the commissioner has
to say. We're our own commission.