Wiz Khalifa talks touring with Snoop Dogg, his evolving career and more
When asked about his summer plans with Snoop Dogg, Wiz Khalifa perhaps hinted at more than he intended.
“We’re going to really have a dope experience behind the scenes as well as on stage,” the Black and Yellow rapper said in a recent conference call with journalists.
Heh. “Dope.” Get it?
Intended or not, the pun was apt. Snoop might be the most notorious stoner in America, and Wiz Khalifa’s no slouch, either. His pre-show routine: “I usually just smoke a lot of pot and listen to some music.”
There’ll be plenty of time for that on their new co-headlining “High Road Tour,” which kicks off in West Palm Beach on Wednesday before hitting Tampa’s MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre on Thursday (click here for details).
“It was my feeling that we should’ve gotten on the road for a long time,” said Khalifa, 28. “At the end of last year, I did a rock and roll tour with Fall Out Boy. I wanted to do something that was more oriented towards my core audience, and doing something with Snoop just felt like the perfect opportunity to bring me and Snoop together, and make it a great fan experience too.”
For both artists, the timing works out. Snoop, the laconic West Coast legend known for hits like Gin & Juice and Drop It Like It’s Hot, has a new album, Coolaid, on which Khalifa makes an appearance. Khalifa also has a new album, Khalifa, but he’s also still riding high on the success of his poppy 2015 single See You Again, a record-setting chart monster that earned a Grammy nomination for Song of the Year.
“I’m really happy with where I’m at, being that I’ve been 10 years in the game,” said Khalifa. “My goal since I was younger was to always be able to reinvent myself, and I think that in the time that I’ve been doing it, I’ve done a great job of inventing and reinventing, and I still give people a lot of hope for what’s next.”
Snoop Dogg offers a nice career template he can follow. The two have worked together numerous times, something Khalifa couldn’t have imagined growing up.
“There’s nobody else in the game like Snoop,” he said. “Growing up listening to his music, and then to meet him and be an acquaintance of his is really cool. The fact that he’s still going and still adding to his legacy is super dope.”
It seems like a safe bet the two will collaborate on stage at some point this summer, perhaps on their new joint single Kush Ups. He also didn’t rule out performing with other artists on the bill, including Jhene Aiko (“I’ve been a fan of hers for a really long time”), Casey Veggies (“I’m willing to do anything on my part to help him get to the next point in his career”) and Kevin Gates (“I just love his energy, his realness that he brings to rap music”).
But it’s the pairing at the top of the tour that should make this tour one of summer’s longest-lasting highs. It might even inspire some new songs.
“Just really having fun throughout the summer has been inspiring my music,” Khalifa said. “Remembering thoughts of being a kid and not having much to do and remembering how important music is to the whole process. It’s going to be cool being able to provide those vibes from the stage.”
-- Jay Cridlin