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February, 10

Rapper Snoop Dogg acquires debut label Death Row Records

(Reuters) - Private equity firm Blackstone, which controls MNRK Music Group, announced on Wednesday rapper Snoop Dogg has acquired Death Row Records, which released his debut album nearly three decades ago and launched his career, from the group.

The 30-year-old label, owned and operated by rapper Dr. Dre and music executive Marion "Suge" Knight, recorded and released two of Snoop Dogg's albums before his exit in 1998.

"It feels good to have ownership of the label I was part of at the beginning of my career and as one of the founding members," the rapper said in a statement.

Tupac Shakur and MC Hammer were among the artists whose music was released through the Los Angeles-based record company.

The Death Row brand acquisition is the first part of a transaction that is expected to see Snoop Dogg also acquire some of the label's music rights - his own and other unspecified artists - Variety reported, citing a source.

The deal comes on the heels of Snoop Dogg's latest album, Bacc On Death Row, which is being released soon. Snoop Dogg is also set to perform in his first Super Bowl halftime show this Sunday, along with Dr. Dre, Eminem, Kendrick Lamar and Mary J. Blige.

Blackstone did not disclose the terms of the transaction.

Photo: Reuters/MARIO ANZUONI
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