Snoop Lion sure was excited to work with Miley Cyrus on his new “Ashtrays and Heartbreaks” single. For the rapper-turned-reggae crooner, collaborating with the former Hannah Montana made sense because they are both changing.
“We’re both going through transformation. We both love making music and doing what we do and speaking from our hearts, and it’s just a great collaboration,” Snoop told MTV News of Cyrus and “Ashtrays and Heartbreaks” when he walked the red carpet for the 2013 MTV Movie Awards last month.
True to his word, the song’s video is heartfelt. Both Miley and Snoop perform as reflections, watching real life drama unfold as the sing about loved ones who they have lost. “Tonight there’s gonna be a whole lot of smoke in the air/ Blow it hard for the ones who ain’t here,” Snoop sings.
In the 1990s a lot of rap’s dead-homey dedications focused on drinking alcohol and pouring liquor to the ground as a sign of respect, with his new reggae-tune Snoop instead chooses marijuana as his coping mechanism and Miley follows suit on the song’s chorus.
“Now my buzz is gone and I need to re-up reality, can’t let them see me weak,” she wails with a faux-Caribbean-tinged accent.
The video, released Thursday on Vevo, isn’t really about the two musical stars, however; there are gritty, cinematic scenes that focus on everyday people. There’s a homeless man, who finds peace in feeding pigeons, and in another scene, three men fight with each other.
The clip highlights a balance of life’s ups and downs, something both Snoop and Miley know something about. “She was one of the greatest musicians and personalities of all time,” he told us in April. “People just expect so much from her because they’ve been watching her whole life from a kid. She’s just ready to be an adult and have fun and express herself, and I support her.”