After constant false starts, Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine recently provided a glimmer of hope that the West Coast producer’s long-awaited, highly anticipated Detox might see the light of day this calendar year. Yeah, we’ve heard that one before, but the powerful pair actually mentioned a single called “Under Pressure,” which features longtime collaborator Jay-Z. Word around the ‘Net is the song is supposed to surface sometime today. Whether it does or doesn’t, we here at XXL got to thinking about how many times the good doctor has performed surgery with some of the best in the business. Question is, who sounds the illest over a coveted Dre beat. Here’s a rundown of some of your options…
Along with DJ Yella, Dre was instrumental in crafting the seminal West Coast group’s gangsta sound, creating the crew’s biggest hits like “Straight Outta Compton,” “Boyz-n-the-Hood,” “Fuck the Police,” “Dopeman,” and “Express Yourself,” among others. There’s nothing like hearing Ice Cube, Eazy-E and MC Ren getting disrespectful on the D-R-E’s early Public Enemy-inspired beats.
Though he was only behind the boards for a couple of Pac’s studio sessons, Dre was arguably responsible for the late rapper’s most successful song, “California Love.” In addition to being nominated for two Grammy awards, the track was also on top of The Billboard Hot 100 singles charts for two weeks in a row.
With such classic staples as “Nuthin’ But A G Thing,” “Deep Cover,” “Gin and Juice,” and “Who Am I (What’s My Name),” Dre and Snoop’s chemistry falls in the same category as peas and carrots and peanut butter and jelly.
Not only did D-R-E give the White boy a career-defining co-sign, he also blessed him with some heat, despite what many critics may say. “My Name Is,” “Guilty Conscience” and “The Real Slim Shady.” Come on, son.
While “Heat,” “Outta Control (Remix),” and “When it Rains it Pours“ are all solid collabos, it all boils down to Dre and 50′s undisputed classic “In Da Club,” which established this as one pair you don’t wanna fuck with.
He doesn’t call himself the Doctor’s Advocate for nothing. Some of Chuck Taylor’s best joints from The Documentary, “How We Do,” “Higher,” “Westside Story” were produced by the Aftermath mastermind.
Although Bussa Bus was only signed to Dre’s Aftermath Records for one album, the duo have put out some phenomenal material together. Besides his work on The Big Bang (“Don’t Get Carried Away, “Get You Some,” “Legend of the Fall Offs”), their best song together is arguably “Break Your Neck” from 2001’s Genesis.
Jiggaman didn’t hop on a Dre joint until 2002’s The Blueprint 2, for the head nodding banger “The Watcher 2,” but since then the two rap giants have united for several mature cuts like “30 Something” “Lost One” and “Minority Report,” and the upcoming “Under Pressure,” among others. [Editor's Note: Dre appeared on "Watch Me," a song on 1999's Vol. 3, but Irv Gotti produced the track]
Many regarded God’s Son’s album with Dre as part of The Firm a failure, but there’s no denying the magic that occurs when Nasir flows over the good doc’s productions. “Hustlers,” “Nas is Coming” and “Phone Tap,” all must haves on any hip-hop fan’s iPod.
Before damaging his vocal chords in a car accident (and baggin’ Erykah Badu), D.O.C. was a pivotal voice behind the West Coast’s sound , contributing to N.W.A’s Straight Outta Compton and Eazy-E’s Eazy Duz It. With Dre producing his own solo disc, Now One Can Do It Better, D.O.C. scored a rare classic and shout out from Dre on Snoop’s “Nuthin But A G Thang.”