With the legalization and increased general tolerance of marijuana, Stoner Christmas, otherwise known as April 20, has seen a boom in commercial potential. And Snoop Dogg — an icon of rap, movies, TV and weed — has been pioneering this development for five years now.
For the last half-decade, on this weekend, uncle Snoop has banded together with a number of associated hip-hop acts to bring the 420 Wellness Retreat Tour to a few venues around the country. The tour aims to celebrate music, cannabis culture and overall wellness, all while Snoop and his crew jam-out on stage. This year, Snoop is making a stop at Matthew Knight Arena on April 21.
April 21 will be a busy day for Snoop Dogg and company. When they arrive in Eugene Saturday afternoon, they’ll have just rocked a Seattle crowd earlier in the day. By the end of the weekend, they will have played five shows in Denver and Las Vegas on Friday; Seattle and Eugene on Saturday; and San Jose, California on Sunday.
The tour’s line-up rotates depending on artist availability. In Eugene, Snoop Dogg will be joined by friend and collaborator, Wiz Khalifa, and San Diego rapper/vocalist, Rob $tone. The Atlanta rap trio Migos will be featured in Denver and Seattle during the tour, and Rae Sremmerd will be joining Snoop Dogg for his show in Las Vegas.
Snoop Dogg has been fairly active in the months leading up to this tour. He released his debut gospel album, “Bible of Love,” just last month. The album attempts to offer peace in an otherwise exasperated social climate. It plays over two hours, being his first double-LP, and it reached number one on the U.S. Gospel Albums chart.
Snoop won’t have the time play his entire new album for the crowd Saturday night, but at least some can be expected as its themes align closely to the purpose of the tour. Beyond his most recent catalog, some of Snoop’s older, classic hip-hop tracks are expected to be performed: “Gin and Juice,” “Ain’t No Fun” and “Drop It Like It’s Hot” among others.
Khalifa has been less active in the recent months. His last studio album was released in 2014, but his staple tracks embody the sentiment behind marijuana, as Khalifa has been very outspoken on the subject in the past. He will be in his element Saturday night, likely taking the stage between opener Rob $tone and headliner Snoop Dogg.
Rob $tone is the freshest on the music scene of the three performers. He just released his debut album last year after building up momentum with his first hit, “Chill Bill.” While his music generally operates within the more stereotypical trends of hip-hop, $tone earns some uniqueness with his willingness to vocalize on his records, making for a nice pairing with Snoop Dogg’s new gospel musical approach.
It’s safe to assume that this could be the last stop in Eugene for the Wellness Tour for the next few years. Considering Matthew Knight’s capability of supporting grand stage design, the 420 Wellness Retreat Tour should be an intoxicating celebration of weed and music on the most marijuana-friendly weekend of the year.