11 Things that Prove Snoop Dogg is Even Cooler than You Think

David Saracino
David Saracino

Legendary rapper and Tanqueray brand rep Snoop Dogg has been going strong since the early ’90s, reinventing himself and evolving all the way. Now, 25 years after the release of his first solo hit, “Gin & Juice,” he’s a TV star, a movie actor, and a wide-ranging entrepreneur—not to mention a hip-hop elder statesman who just released his 16th solo album. Beyond his longevity and multi-platform career, he’s achieved something even more rare: Snoop is pretty much universally liked. Everyone picks up on his natural charisma, positivity, and sense of humor, even if they’re not aware of his off-the-charts mic skills or many other attributes. Because the truth is, Snoop is even cooler than most people realize, and here are 11 things that prove it.

1. He founded the largest youth football organization in Southern California

In 2005, Snoop started a youth football league to serve some of the most impoverished areas of Los Angeles. “I like going to areas where the murder rate is high,” he told Forbes, “and dropping it.” Since then, the Snoop Youth Football League has become the biggest youth football club in the region, changing lives and mentoring thousands, including one future pro football champion (Ronnie Hillman) and a critically acclaimed hip hop star (Vince Staples).

2. He gave arguably the best speech ever at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Inducting a late, great fellow West Coast rapper into the hall, Snoop was heartfelt, humorous  and profound. The entire speech is well worth reading, but here are a few highlights: “To be human is to be many things at once: strong and vulnerable, hardheaded and intellectual, courageous and afraid. …”; “I’d get a white Rolls Royce with that creamy peanut butter leather and [he] would go and get a black one just like it.” Also: He and his fellow legend went parasailing together in South America—with a notorious (and currently incarcerated) former label head driving the boat. Yikes.

3. His connection to Tanqueray is totally organic

Snoop name-dropped Tanqueray in song way back in 1993, when he was barely 22, and it was not a decision calculated for marketing purposes. Tanqueray was—and still is—his go-to base for Gin & Juice. Now, a quarter century later, he reps the brand he immortalized in a track “about good feelings and real experiences [that] just naturally became a global anthem.” And he brought some cool friends to the party.

David Saracino

4. He has an entire film career you may not be aware of

You’re probably familiar with Snoop’s roles in big-budget mainstream Hollywood thrillers and comedies. But if you had to guess how many screen roles Snoop has had, what would you say? Five? Seven? Try 34. And that’s just feature films. He’s also appeared in some 25 TV series.

5. He single-handedly revived a classic cocktail combo

The gin and juice pairing dates to the 19th century, when pioneering bartenders started whipping up drinks like the Tom Collins and the Gin Rickey. But the combo gradually receded to the background during the 20th century. After Snoop’s song became a hit, interest in gin and juice spiked, taking the combo from Snoop’s mother’s house parties to global status. Then came the cocktail revolution of the early 2000s, and now people order quality gin and (fresh) juice combos in bars pretty much everywhere; you can order a Tom Collins or a Gin Rickey knowing you’ll be getting the real deal. Tanqueray London Dry gin has been a part of classic gin cocktails since the early days, and Tanqueray No. TEN is tailor-made for Gin & Juice.

6. Stardom runs in his family

He’s the cousin of departed fellow West Coast rapper Nate Dogg, and the nephew of legendary bassist Bootsy Collins, who played in James Brown’s band and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1997 as a founding member of landmark funk collective Parliament-Funkadelic.

David Saracino

7. Even at his fast-food job back in the day, he was a star

Snoop has a well-circulated quote about being the best you can be, even if you’re flipping burgers at an iconic fast-food chain—and it’s not just talk. As he recently shared on a late-night talk show, before his rap career took off, Snoop worked in a fast-food joint, and was known as “Young Eggs” for his ability to “break eggs with one hand without getting any shell on the grizzidle.” This might be our favorite thing ever about Snoop Dogg.

Snoop was the MVP of the 2018 Hip Hop All-Star Game (a far more competitive event than the other celebrity all-star game), racking up 15 points, 25 rebounds, and five blocks. He’s 46 years old and we have no idea how he does it, but make no mistake: Snoop can play.

9. He’s one of the very few rappers to release stone-cold classics in two different decades

The Tanqueray-touting “Gin & Juice” came out in 1993 and instantly became a classic hip-hop party anthem. Eleven years later, Snoop released “Drop it Like it’s Hot,” the first No. 1 song of his career, and easily one of the best hip hop songs of that decade.

10. He made 10 consecutive gold records (nine of which also went platinum)

From the 10,000,000 units sold of his debut to the nearly 1,000,000 for 2009’s Malice n Wonderland, Snoop has reeled off an astounding string of successful records. His most recent one, the gospel-tinged Bible of Love, hit No. 1 on Billboard’s Top Gospel Album chart.

11. His nature documentary series on late-night talk-show TV is the jolt of fun you didn’t know was missing from your life

Top moments: “Snakes are straight ***holes;” and the way he roots for a fiesty gang of otters against an enormous crocodile: “Yeah, back up fool.”