Admittedly, Snoop Dogg doesn’t know much about skateboarding, but for what he lacks in that area, he more than makes up for it with his “Doggystyle” — and West Coast flavor.
So when Adidas tapped him to collaborate with skateboarding legend Mark “Gonz” Gonzales on an “L.A. Stories” capsule collection inspired by their shared love of Los Angeles culture, the creative synchronicity was blazing.
“The ideas were flowing left and right,” Snoop shared with Footwear News at ComplexCon in Long Beach, Calif., ahead of his concert at the Long Beach Convention Center. “We have some similarities, but it’s the uniqueness between the both of us. I don’t think there’s nothing that I do that he do that’s the same — but just being original, being fly, diverse, on the edge and willing to try different things. We’re making other people adjust to us as opposed to us adjusting to the game.”
As edgy artists of their own disciplines, the connection was instant. Snoop recalled first meeting him a while back “on the streets,” and they later reconnected to film a commercial together. Snoop was impressed with what he saw. “This [guy] was crazy,” he said of the past encounter. “The stunts that he’s willing to do — the [stuff] he’s willing to try, I just love his attitude. He reminds me of Evel Knievel.”
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What resulted from their latest partnership is like a love letter to a Southern California in the ‘90s — a time when Snoop’s ‘93 debut studio album, “Doggystyle,” made him a star.
The plaid flannels that they were fond of at the time are digitized on the tongue and heel overlay on the “L.A. Stories” line’s Matchcourt Mid. sneaker, which features a full-grain, buttery cream leather upper and the sportswear brand’s iconic three stripes in a light blue hue.
Along with the kicks, the collection includes a hoodie, long-sleeve shirt and T-shirt emblazoned with Southern California iconography such as low-riders and graffiti-style graphics.
The Snoop x Gonz footwear retails for $85 and the apparel stars at $30; they drop on Dec. 5 on Adidas.com and at specialty skate stores.
In March, Adidas and the entertainer collaborated on the Adizero 5-Star 5.0 x Kevlar Snoop cleats, inspired by his debut album’s “Gin and Juice” hit. It followed another shoe released last year that nodded his track “Who Am I? (What’s My Name?)” — the Adizero 5-Star 4.0 Uncaged Cleat and Gameday Trainer.
As a big football fan, the connection was obvious. And now, by extending his vision in the skateboarding category, it is a sign of confidence from Adidas — and more things to come, Snoop shared.
Unlike sports stars, his marketability isn’t tied to a season or performance — his appeal is aligned with his uninhibited character and originality. Case in point: His cooking show with domestic diva Martha Stewart, “Martha & Snoop’s Potluck Dinner Party,” premiered Nov. 7 on VH1.
“I think my relationship with Adidas has changed in many ways, as far as them having respect, love and faith — knowing that I’m not just a one kind of guy,” he explained. “In some kind of way, I’m all over [the place], meaning that if they do a deal with a basketball player, they have to do a basketball shoe, and when his basketball season is over with, his shoe ain’t good no more. But when they do a deal with Snoop Dogg, he can make a football shoe, a skater shoe, a shoe for running, a shoe for playing — any genre or topic you can make a shoe that’s connected to it.
“It doesn’t have to say my name, it just has to have my thought process, like when we do collaborations — like with me and Gonz,” he continued. “I’m not a skater, so what am I doing making a skate shoe? But if you put me with him, we’ll make something fly because we’re both from the West Coast. By the time you look at the shoe it makes sense. Then you turn around, and football season is here, and Snoop’s got a hell of a football shoe — he’s got a football and skater shoe, because I’m seasonal. And then when basketball season comes I’ll have a shoe that’s a high-top and looks like a basketball shoe.”