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Trying to Get His Bite Back

Snoop Doggy Dogg has a new lease on life after his acquittal on murder charges. Still, some things will never change.

August 12, 1996|CHEO HODARI COKER | TIMES STAFF WRITER

The album also comes with an image change, with Snoop trading in the khaki pants, jeans and sneakers for suits by Polo, Hugo Boss and Versace. At first, it was an urging from both Snoop's lawyer and his father during the trial, for a more mature look, but now it's something the rapper does all the time.

"I noticed that when I started wearing suits that people began to look at me differently," he says. "I didn't even have to speak and people would look past the songs on my albums."

Snoop has moved into a 5,000-square-foot home in the hills of Claremont, where he lives with the mother of his son and their kennel of 20 pit bulls. He's also formed his own record label, Doggystyle Records, a subsidiary of Death Row Records, and signed the Gap Band's Charlie Wilson as one of his first artists.

That's a long way from the small, one-story tract house in East Long Beach. But Snoop sees himself as the same person he always was.

"The money and cars are nice, but they don't move me," he says. "It's always been the music. Just having the freedom to do my thing, being able to barbecue some chicken wings and chill with my baby and my baby's mama, is the best thing in the world.'

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