Warren G has recently cooked up a potential hit with Young Jeezy with “Leave You Alone,” which features Ne-Yo, but going into the studio hasn't been the same for West Coast producer/rapper since his close friend Nate Dogg died last year. He talks about it in this exclusive BET.com video.
The Long Beach, CA native recalled the moment he learned of Nate's death while on tour with Snoop Dogg in Corpus Christi, TX last March.
"I got the call and I didn't wanna tell Snoop, because he was getting ready to perform," Warren revealed. "But I had to tell him, and he was crushed. We were crushed. We didn't know what to do."
The three childhood friends had dreams of rap stardom well before they linked up with Dr. Dre and launched hip hop’s G-funk era in the early 1990s. Together, they formed the group 213, named after their shared area code, and were able to find enormous success building the foundation of West Coast hip hop. While Warren played orchestrator as the group's DJ/producer, fusing Snoop’s rhymes with Nate’s singing, he credits Nate with being the real creative genius in the trio.
"Nate was the guy that would take our concept to the next level," Warren G recalls of the soulful singer. "He was the one who would bring it to life and put it in a way that everyone could relate to it."
Since Nate's passing of complications from a stroke last year, Warren G says making music hasn't been the same. The absence of his close friend and musical collaborator is always on his mind.
"It hurts knowing that one of your top dawgs is gone," Warren G said. "When I'm in the lab making music, it's just not the same.... I always think, 'Man, Nate would kill this.'”
"He was more than a hook man," G added, reflecting on the late singer's legacy. "He was a songwriter and an incredible artist."
Warren G is working on new music featuring unreleased Nate Dogg vocals and plans to release the sequel to his 1994 classic debut, Regulate... G-Funk Era Pt. 2 later this year.
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