“REGULATORS, MOUNT UP!”
“It was a clear black night, a clear white moon…”
“So I hooks a left on the 21 and Lewis/ Some brothas shootin’ dice so I said ‘Let’s do this!'”
I freakin love this song! I always have. Its my anthem. When it first came out, I played it over and over and over again so I could learn every word. Nate Dogg has a way of getting into your brain like that. He sings shit with such conviction, gangsterism and enthusiasm that you cant help but sing along. Nate Dogg has the most city pride for Long Beach, he made Long Beach famous & really got us on the map. He and Snoop Dogg created that G-Funk sound that you just cant deny. Nate WAS Long Beach… born & raised. He was on so many classic tracks that as my friend Ani puts it, “were the soundtrack to my youth”.
I knew he had had a couple strokes & been in a coma like state for a few years but when I heard of his death it still came as a shock. I was on the Metro Blueline riding to Long Beach from LA when I first read it on twitter. I called a friend of his to confirm the news and sadly it was true. I didn’t expect my own reaction. My eyes got watery, I had a lump in my throat and a really strong desire to stand up on the train and let all the people headed to Long Beach know that we had just lost a legend. I always keep a bullhorn in my car and as soon as the train dropped me at my car, I drove thru the streets. I just felt like the city needed to know, so I rolled down my sun roof and stuck the bullhorn out the top driving past places with folks outside. “REST IN PEACE TO THE LEGEND NATE DOGG. REGULATORS MOUNT UP!”
I don’t know what came over me. It was midnight and I was alone in the car, I just had to let folks know. One of the places I drove past to make the announcement was the corner of 21 & Lewis on the Eastside. Nate sang about 21 & Lewis and made it a hood landmark of Long Beach. I knew that night that I needed to make a tribute for Nate. This is what I came up with. It is 11″ x 17″ and laminated. Notice the clear black night and the clear white moon in the background, eh, eh? Notice the dice?