— On this day back in 1994, West Coast Hip-Hop pioneer, Warren G, released his debut album, Regulate…G Funk Era .

Regulate…G Funk Era was released by Violator Records and distributed by Def Jam Records on June 7th 1994.The album became an instant classic and helped to establish Warren G as the West Coast pioneer that he is seen as today. Some might say that with Dr. Dre as a stepbrother and mentor as well as Nate Dogg as a childhood friend, Warren G was destined for greatness. However, it’s clear to see that Warren G carved out his own sound and was able to successfully capitalize on his own talents and surrounding environment to create this classic.

The album opens up with its biggest hit, “Regulate”, which features Nate Dogg and offers a detailed depiction of the rough and unruly West Coast gang life of the 1990s. “Regulate” was even featured on the soundtrack of the 1994 film, Above the Rim, and has been a part of countless pop culture references. “This D.J.” featuring O.G.L.B. was also a top ten hit. Other stand out tracks include “Do You See”, “Super Soul Sis”, “So Many Ways”, “What’s Next”, and “This is the Shack”.

In regards to production, Warren G handled it all himself and didn’t disappoint. Warren G is highly respected for his production alone and Regulate…G Funk Era was his first chance to showcase his skills on a full-length project. Smooth basslines and whining synths were staples, however, Warren G came with a more laid-back approach to the West Coast G-Funk sound than other artists of the subgenre. Even lyrically, Warren G wasn’t quite as interested in hardcore gangbanging as some of his G-Funk peers. Although still wrapped up that hostile West Coast environment, Warren G focused his lyrics more on smoking fat blunts, riding in low riders, and making good music.

As far as features go, Nate Dogg was easily the most popular and long-lasting talent to assist on Regulate…G Funk Era’s creation. However, despite not having illustrious careers, artists like The Twinz, Jah Skillz, Wayniac, Lady Levi, O.G.L.B., The Dove Shack, Mr. Malik, Bo Roc, and G Child all held their own on this album. Warren G even called on B-Tip and the late great comedian Ricky Harris for the hilarious skits, “Gangsta Sermon” and “’94 Ho Draft”.

Regulate…G Funk Era also did very well commercially, selling 176,000 copies in its first week and debuting at #2 on the Billboard Top 200 Album Chart. As of August 1st 1995, the album has been certified triple platinum, having sold 3 million records at that point.

Now that it’s summertime, this would be the perfect opportunity to vibe to some of the smooth sounds of this album. So, fire up your grill, call up some friends, and make some memories this summer—sponsored by Warren G.

Written by Simo Haier

— With his debut album set to drop this Friday, Nipsey Hussle releases a long overdue collaboration with fellow South Central MC, Kendrick Lamar, titled “Dedication”.

Dedication is something that both Nipsey Hussle and Kendrick Lamar have plenty of and have exhibited time and time again. With both artists coming from largely similar backgrounds and having uniquely authentic approaches to their brands, “Dedication” is the perfect meeting of the minds.

Nipsey Hussle opens up with a vivid narrative of what dedication is to him over classic DJ Quik-inspired instrumentals. Kendrick Lamar then comes through and provides a different take on the same subject—even giving props to Nip for his constant talks about “flourishing from the streets to black businesses”.

Overall, the “Dedication” is an instant West Coast classic and salute to the hustle—something that Nipsey and K.Dot know all too well.

Be sure to grab Nipsey Hussle’s album, Victory Lap, this Friday or pre-order it now at the Nipsey Hussle official website.

Written by Simo Haier

— Twenty-three years ago, Snoop Dogg made his acting debut as he starred in the short film, Murder Was the Case, also creating the soundtrack.

Murder Was The Case

On this day back in 1994, Death Row Records released a bit of a treat for fans of hardcore West Coast Hip-Hop with the short film and soundtrack, Murder Was the Case. Snoop Dogg held the starring role as well as headlined the soundtrack while Dr. Dre and Fab Five Freddy directed the project. The 18-minute film recounted the fictional death of Snoop Dogg (played as himself) and his resurrection following a deal he made with the devil.

As Snoop Dogg intended, Murder Was the Case, revealed a side of the streets that couldn’t be shown on general music video platforms. In an interview regarding the film Snoop Dogg said,

“Videos, kind of limit us. MTV, BET, they only let you play so much of what you do… When we go in the studio [to make our songs] we make them hardcore and straight from the streets. So, this video is like a dedication to that… staying true to what we do, saying that we ain’t going to stick to making rated PG videos. This one is a rated R video just like the song is. It’s just real. It’s actuality.”

Still, behind the apparent violence, explicit dialogue, and sexually lewd behavior, Snoop Dogg makes it clear that he simply does what is necessary to make it through another day in the hood.

While the short film is only 18 minutes long, it has been padded with performances, interviews, and music videos including “Gin and Juice” and “Doggy Dogg World”. You can also find countless other important figures in the film and the included music videos including, Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, Tupac Shakur, Pam Grier, John Witherspoon, John Amos, and late comedians Ricky Harris and Charlie Murphy.

Check out the full movie including interviews, performances, and music videos below.

Written by DJ Robinson