The last time Snoop Dogg made an impression on a scripted series, he was rhyming, not surprisingly, about a special ”blend” on Showtime’s dramedy Weeds. But his next cameo will make you think you’re trippin’: Come May 8, he’ll embark on a two-day stint playing himself on ABC’s One Life to Live. Though he admits to watching the soap with his mother as a kid, don’t mistake this move as just a sentimental act — it’s also strategic.
When Snoop’s Geffen labelmate Mary J. Blige first visited OLTL in 2006, she saw her CD sales rise 36 percent, according to Nielsen SoundScan, thanks to the show’s 2.1 million female viewers. Having built a core audience of ladies with his reality series, Snoop Dogg’s Father Hood, appearing on the soap seemed like a no-brainer. ”It’s a natural fit for him,” says his manager, Constance Schwartz — and a great way to move copies of his latest, Ego Trippin’, which was released March 11. ”We’re definitely looking for a bump in sales,” adds Schwartz. Says Sharon Masters, senior director of marketing at Atlantic Records, who’s placed artists like Jewel on CBS’ The Young and the Restless: ”It’s about promotional exposure.”
With everyone from Celine Dion (on ABC’s All My Children) to Timbaland (on OLTL) popping up on soaps, Snoop is in good company. And next month alone, country singer Trace Adkins and soul crooner Ne-Yo will be seen on Y&R and AMC, respectively. ”A lot of it is about breaking the daytime [soap] stigma…and we make sure the artists come off well,” says Paul S. Glass, supervising music director for OLTL. Added incentive for Snoop, because his biggest female fan — Mom! — will be watching.