Last month, things began to take a futuristic turn for Death Row Records, with former label signee Snoop Dogg taking ownership of the label and soon after saying that the “world’s most dangerous record label” would be made into an NFT. After buying the iconic brand and catalog last month and promising to transform it into “an NFT label” operating in the metaverse, fans were perplexed this weekend to find several key albums missing from all streaming services. Snoop appears to have removed albums including Dr. Dre‘s 1992 debut The Chronic, his own seven-times platinum 1993 debut Doggystyle and Kurupt and Daz Dillinger‘s Tha Dogg Pound project’s 1995 Dogg Food from streaming services. 2pac‘s two 1996 Death Row albums, All Eyez On Me and The Don Killuminati: The 7 Day Theory, remain on streaming, since they are no longer a part of Death Row catalog that Snoop acquired from the Blackstone-controlled MNRK Music Group (formerly eOne Music).
On Monday March 14, Snoop released Death Row Mix: Vol. 1 for sale as NFTs on the new Web3 music startup Sound XYZ, describing it as a nearly half-hour DJ mix of “some bits and pieces from my friends and family for you to enjoy. Even a couple minutes for you to throw your own verse in there,”. Sound XYZ announced on Twitter that the 1,000 limited edition NFTs of the mix had sold out in under an hour and the website had crashed, but that the secondary market had opened.
It should be noted that since Snoop’s purchase, the Death Row website has stopped selling the label’s CD and vinyl albums. Even though Snoop hasn’t publicly addressed the Death Row projects’ disappearance, fans have expressed their displeasure in the absence of some of Hip Hop’s most revered classics.