Sold-out crowd sways to Snoop Dogg concert

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LEWISTON — Despite a falling blanket of slush, more than 2,000 people sold out Bates College's Gray Cage on Saturday night to see hip-hop artist Snoop Dogg.

"It's snowing and I am here," longtime fan and Bates sophomore James Watkins said. "We thought it was only a rumor that he was coming, but I've got my ticket."

Minutes after the doors opened, people pressed against a stage bathed in blue lights and decorated in a 12-foot-tall banner with Dogg's name and the image of a lingerie-clad woman. 

The show began with an R-rated video featuring hard parties, guns, magic and Snoop Dogg.

At 9:30 p.m., opening act Dephonic took the stage with the greeting, "What up Maine?" The Philadelphia-based band fused rap and guitar-heavy indie rock.

The crowd danced in place, lifting their hands in the air with the beat.

The man known as "The Doggfather" climbed the at stage about 10:45 p.m. wearing a down parka and carrying a jewel-encrusted mic.

"Where are the sexy ladies at?" he asked.

As expected, song lyrics got risque after that.

Fans arrive early

Bob Levasseur and brothers Nate and Evan Aurelio drove two hours from Winterport to attend the show. For the hip-hop fans, it was a rare opportunity.

"I've been a fan since I was little," Levasseur said. "How often does Snoop Dogg come to Maine? Never."

Across the Bates campus, the concert has been topic No. 1, Watkins said.

The day tickets went on sale for students, some skipped classes to purchase one the specially grooved and glittered tickets. Two days later, when the general public was given a chance, the tickets sold online in 90 seconds.

Lydia Lazarou of Turner bought tickets that morning  for her husband, Stephen, as a combination birthday present and fifth wedding anniversary gift.

"The minute they flipped, she got 'em,"  Stephen said.  She shocked him with them on Thursday. "I smiled all day until my face hurt."

Snoop Dogg has been one of the biggest names in rap for more than a decade, earning 12 Grammys and selling millions of CDs.

His music career began in 1992 when he was discovered by Dr. Dre. His debut album, Doggystyle, was released a year later under Death Row Records. The record went quadruple platinum and spawned several hit singles, including "What's My Name" and "Gin & Juice."

A new record following 2009's "Malice in Wonderland" called "More Malice: Deluxe Album and Movie" is to be released on March 23.

Despite the success, the concert worried some locals who have read headlines about the rapper's troubled criminal history. Campus security, Lewiston police officers and a private firm, Taylor Made Security of Saco, all staffed the show.

At press time, there were no reports of problems.

In 2007, Snoop Dogg, born Cordozar Calvin Broadus Jr., pleaded no contest to felony gun and marijuana charges and agreed to five years' probation and 800 hours of community service, according to The Associated Press.

In 1990, he was convicted of cocaine possession. Six years later, after his career as a rapper had taken off, he was acquitted of a murder charge after an alleged street-gang member was killed by gunfire from a vehicle in which Snoop Dogg was traveling. In 1997, he pleaded guilty on an earlier weopons charge in exchange for three years' probation and a promise to make public service announcements against violence, AP reported.

Snoop Dogg
Amber Waterman/Sun Journal

Snoop Dogg performs at Bates College in Lewiston on Saturday night.

Snoop Dogg
Amber Waterman/Sun Journal

The weather did not deter fans from waiting in line for almost an hour in the falling snow as they waited to see hip-hop star Snoop Dogg Saturday night in Lewiston.

Snoop Dogg
Amber Waterman/Sun Journal

The rapper Snoop Dogg performs at Bates College in Lewiston on Saturday night.

Snoop Dogg
Amber Waterman/Sun Journal

Cordozar Calvin Broadus, better known as Snoop Dogg, performs at Bates College in Lewiston on Saturday night to a crowd of more than 2,000 people.

Snoop Dogg
Amber Waterman/Sun Journal

Rapper Snoop Dogg took the stage Saturday night at Bates to thousands of screaming fans.

Snoop Dogg
Amber Waterman/Sun Journal

Snoop Dogg at Bates.

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Amber Waterman/Sun Journal

Chrystie Corns turns to talk to her friend, Erin Dow, both of Winthrop, as they wait for the Snoop Dogg concert to begin at Bates College on Saturday.

Snoop Dogg
Amber Waterman/Sun Journal

Katie Estes sunggles into Shayne Oliver's jacket while waiting for the doors to open at the Snoop Dogg concert Saturday night at Bates College. The couple traveled from Anson to see the rapper.

Snoop Dogg
Amber Waterman/Sun Journal

Nate Aurelio, right, with friends Bob Levasseur, second from right, and Evan Aurelio, third from right, got to Lewiston at 2 p.m. Saturday after a two-hour drive from Winterport so they could be the first in line for the Snoop Dogg concert at Bates College on Saturday. Anthony Thibodeau, left, also arrived early from Lyman.

Snoop Dogg
Amber Waterman/Sun Journal

Alex Hooydonk, center, of Brunswick is searched while Mark Wildes, right, waits his turn at the Snoop Dogg concert Saturday night at Bates College. Security was tight at the venue.

Snoop Dogg
Amber Waterman/Sun Journal

Catherine Green checks IDs as she hands out tickets to the sold-out Snoop Dogg concert Saturday night at Bates College.

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Comments

 's picture

I agree with My2Pittbulls  

I agree with My2Pittbulls   There was no reason for the last paragraph.

 's picture

Just what the world needs if

Just what the world needs if more people to idolize the likes of him.

RONALD RIML's picture

So did the Dogg lie to start

So did the Dogg lie to start a War in Iraq and kill hundred of thousands???

So shizzle my mizzles!!!

 's picture

No Saddam did.

No Saddam did.

 's picture

By Saddam you mean Bush?

By Saddam you mean Bush?

 's picture

No Saddam lied about the WMDs

No Saddam lied about the WMDs because he feared an invasion from Iran more than an invasion from the US.

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