Tuesday, 24 February 2015

(Mixtape) - Dr Dre - G-Tox

The NWA Movie Countdown - Part 2

Dr Dre Reaches His Half Century...

Andre Young will be remembered in the history of hip hop. He has played a pivotal role and been the driving force behind The Gangsta Rap and G-Funk movements. He has been the mentor and producer to some of the biggest names in the game. Dre is definitely not a True MC, but he is the mastermind behind some of the biggest hip hop records ever made. His creation and recent sale of the Beats By Dre headphone range has put him at the cutting edge of technology and fashion, which still, unlike recorded music, remain immensely profitable. One week ago saw the good doctor turn 50 years old, but even in his sixth decade, the world still watches closley to find out what he’s going to do next.

Dre’s first production was with The World Class Wreckin Cru – a “Sucker MCs” knock-off that became a local hit in south Los Angeles in 1984. Dre hooked up with Yella, Lonzo and Cli-N-Tel then recruited friends C.I.A. (Cru’ In Action)  which Ice Cube was part of, to add backing vocals to the dance-craze anthem Cabbage Patch.The first true collaboration between Dre and Cube came a year later, with CIA’s My Posse, which showed an affinity for the Beastie Boys. NWA started coming together when Dre got sick of electro and wearing sequins, Dre and Yella knew a local crack dealer named Eric Wright (Eazy-E). With Ice Cube taking care of the lyrics, the newly minted Eazy-E debuted in 1987 with the huge Dre banger and hood anthem: Boyz-N-Tha Hood. On the back of this record, without any airplay or advertising NWA’s debut album, Straight Outta Compton sold 500,000 copies in six weeks after its release in August 1988. A letter from the FBI prohibiting the track Fuck Tha Police from being played at shows, only made the group bigger and bigger. There was only one possible response from “The World’s Most Dangerous Group” as to what they could and couldn’t play…

..."Fuck Em!" - N.W.A.
For the airplay-friendly single Express Yourself, the Doctor spit how he did not smoke bud, because “it’s known to give a brother brain damage”. Things changed for the rest of his career after hooking up with Snoop for The Chronic, with its stoner-centric vibes, even the album cover was based on a pack a Zig-Zags. Express Yourself was built around the Charles Wright hit from 1971, who happens to be Eazy-E’s uncle. The D.O.C. had contributed a lot to Straight Outta Compton, and his 1989 solo debut No One Can Do It Better suggested his partnership with Dre promised big things, but a car crash that crushed his larynx silenced him for the rest of the century, making him a ghost writer for many of The Doctor’s verses. As much success as NWA had, the paperwork was shady, Eazy-E owned Ruthless Records, he and Jerry Heller were making the most money, which led to the departure of Ice Cube before the groups second album EFIL4ZAGGIN was finished. This ultimately led to the fall apart of NWA with Dre leaving the group in 1992. While he was trying to leave NWA , he made his first solo single with Long Beach’s 213 front man Snoop Doggy Dogg, forming a partnership that would last more than 20 years. Dre's debut solo offering The Chronic was just as much a Snoop album as it was Dre’s. Dre changed his shit up for the Chronic, marking the start of the G-Funk era, something that both hardcore rap fans and pop audiences could grasp. Dre hit the world with the classic single Nuthin’ But A G-Thang, it reached No 2 in the US making him a pop star. The Chronic set a new benchmark for hip hop it was very near perfection as a rap record from that time, laced with lyrics of persistent and sustained hatefulness over laid back west coast beats. Rumours suggest Dre would spend days just getting a single cymbal note right to perfect his sound. The Wu-Tang Clan’s Rza has gone on record saying that he deliberately tried to out-bass The Chronic on the clan’s banger 7th Chamber Part II from their 1993 debut album.

Snoop’s debut album, Doggystyle dropped in 1993 and picked up where The Chronic left off, turning the former Crip into a superstar. Dre’s perfectionist production ensured that Snoopy’s smoked out flow rode the perfect beats making Doggystyle another Death Row classic. Dr Dre won the Grammy for best solo performance in 1994 for the single Let Me Ride. He hooked back up with Cube for Natural Born Killaz from The Murder Was The Case soundtrack, this is one of Dre’s greatest productions, and helped bring the best out of Ice Cube. Dre and Cube’s Helter Skelter album was trailed as the next Death Row album on the sleeve of Doggystyle, but it never materialised. According to Cube, not a single song was recorded. In 1995 2Pac signed to Death Row after Suge Knight agreed to pay his bail, Dre collaborated with Pac on the massive track California Love, spawning two huge music videos and becoming as US No. 1 hit. The following East vs West war, Increasing violence and gang presence at Death Row and the death of 2Pac led to the label starting to implode. Dre was looking for a way out. He recorded Keep Their Heads Ringin’ from 1995’s Friday Soundtrack and added a fat eight bars to Teddy Riley’s swingbeat supergroup Blackstreet’s No Diggity. As Death Row crumbled Dre built bridges with the East, teaming up with Nas on Nas Is Coming from his 1996 follow-up to Illmatic.

“It’s strange, his music is strange, and it was kinda hard for me to write to it.We had to finish it in one day, because both of us were real busy. If I had the time I would have changed all the rhymes, the whole format of the way I came on the music, everything.” – Nas on working with Dre in 1996

In 1997 Dre cut a new deal for his own Aftermath label with the parent imprint Interscope. He released the single Been There Done That on the compilation album Dr Dre Presents the Aftermath and collaborated with KRS-ONE, Nas, Cypress Hill’s B-Real and RBX on the Group Therapy track Eastcoast / Westcoast  Killaz in an attempt to put an end to the east/west feuding. Following his collaborations with Nas, Dre got with the Trackmasters to produce for the New York supergroup The Firm including members Nas, AZ, Nature and Foxy Brown. The only album dropped by the crew was 1997’s mafia themed The Album which was met with mixed reviews and disappointing sales. In 1999 Dre took a punt signing an underground white rapper by the name of Marshall Mathers. Dre had a lot of input into Eminem’s first album and ground breaking single My Name Is and then collaborating on the concept track Guilty Conscience. Slim Shady would go on to become the most successful commercial rapper of all time following Dre’s backing. Dre went back to his roots for his second album 2001, released in 1999 recruiting Snoop Dogg and a gang of westcoast stars, launching three massive singles and putting another multi-platinum classic album under his belt. Dre produced two huge pop-soul club bangers in 2001, Eve and Gwen Stefani’s Let Me Blow Ya Mind and Mary J Blige’s Family Affair, released just weeks apart this was two more mainstream smashes by The Doctor. Dre collaborated with Jay-Z on the sequel to The Watcher featuring Rakim and Truth Hurts on a banging track from Jay’s 2002 The Blueprint 2. Next off the production line was 2003’s, debut Get Rich Or Die Tryin’ from 50 Cent. His first album after signing to Eminem’s Shady label broke sales records and its Dre-produced lead single In Da Club represented a new peak for the Diggy Doc. By the time The Game debuted with The Documentary in 2005, the set-up for Dre’s Aftermath label was standard ,a Dre production for his first single, with the label’s most recent heavy hitter (50 Cent in this case) guesting on a number of tracks. Dre produced the final track on Busta Rhymes’ first album on Aftermath, Legend of the Fall Offs, The album The Big Bang entered the US charts at No 1. Dre made a sick beat out of the sound of soil and stones being shoveled on to a coffin lid. It’s a shame it didn’t work out with Busta and Dre, Busta left Aftermath after a creative clash with Jimmy Iovine similar to the way Rakim left the label. Other artists who have been on Aftermath and left are: Raekwon The Chef, Eve and Joell Ortiz. In 2010, Dre announced The Planets, an instrumental album with each track being named after one of the planets in the solar system. As of now this is another Dre project that has not (and probably never will) drop.
I made this tape around late 2010 early 2011, when Dre dropped the singles Kush and I Need A Doctor as a sort of prequel to Detox which I have deliberately tried to avoid talking about in this post. It contains tracks spanning Dre’s whole career as an MC, from some early Wreckin Cru tracks, a couple of NWA joints, Rare shit, Remixes, Guest Spots and the two street singles that I just mentioned. Following Beats being sold to Apple and Dre becoming the richest man ever in hip hop it looks like Detox will never come out.
Until it does, check out my (sort of) prequel, G-Tox, Listen above tracklist below…


01. Intro
02. Kush
03. An Ounce Of Chronic
04. My Life
05. Dayz Of Wayback
06. House Calls
07. Cabbage Patch
08. Turn Off The Lights (Remix)
09. Lovers (Remix)
10. Findum Fuckem & Flee
11. Tha Saga Continues
12. Keep They Headz Ringin' (Remix)
13. No Diggerty
14. Ghetto Fabulous
15. California Love (Remix)
16. Deep Cover (Remix)
17. Where I'm From (Remix)
18. U Know
19. On The Blvd
20. In Tha Club (Remix)
21. Get It
22. Dr Dre & Mr Ski
23. Blaww
24. Rolex
25. Step On
26. Fast Money
27. Bad Guys Always Die
28. Shit Hits Tha Fan (Remix)
29. Just Dippin'
30. Syllables
31. Still Dre (Remix)
32. Tha Wash
33. Every Day Thang
34. Put It On Me
35. Gangsta
36. Imagine
37. Symphony In X Major
38. Zoom
39. Mind Made Up
40. Puppet Master
41. Encore (Remix)
42. Been There Done That
43. I Need A Doctor

Download Here

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