Dr Dre has come a long way in life. From the mean streets of Compton to what many would still argue is his current position, affixed atop the rap game. He has evolved as an artist since forming Ruthless Records with Ice Cube back in ’86 and come a long way yet, with the upcoming release of his new album Detox, The Doc once again has the streets engulfed with flame. With his album around the corner some have wondered if his work is worth the wait. Will The Doctor “save the West”? More important still, is Dr. Dre still relevant, and how will his new album effect his legacy?
A lot of people believe in quantity over quality. If you subscribe to that you are not going to be a fan of Dr Dre’s method of putting work out. Maybe one album every decade is not enough for you, emphatically so even. Why though does The Doc have such a stringent once in a blue moon policy? One of the positives of putting out a album every ten years is it disallows artists to succumb to the Lil Wayne effect — see law of diminishing returns. Of course he is worth the wait; ninety percent of the work the man has done has been excellent.
As the the king of G-funk, The Doctor has been said to be the leader of the supposedly downtrodden West — some have gone as far as saying the release of Detox will be the West’s saving grace, putting it back at the forefront of the rap world. The man is a legend who put Compton on the map. He has worked with countless icons and put his stamp on rap as much as any of them. Respected in every circle of music, when Detox comes out it is going to be excellent by all estimations and is going to go plaque. How one could think he owes the West anything is beyond comprehension, he is synonymous with the left coast.
How can one say Dre has not been relevant even with out actual albums — look at his presence on recent heavy weight albums like 50’s Before I Self Destruct and Eminem’s Recovery. Asking where he has been is more akin to asking where have you been? Only a handful of artists have stayed as relevant as Dre over his platinum plaque studded career. The fact that “Kush” has done so well does not serve as any kind of surprise for anyone because Dre always puts quality tunes out and people like good music. He himself may not drop albums every other day like Lil B Da Base God but he does stay relevant by dropping timely material that even if found in a time capsule a thousand years from now will still be considered ill.
Should he have just stopped at The Chronic? Some think that Dre has nothing left in the tank and he is not his former self. He is not putting out enough content, he is not relevant, and he has let the West down… Oh ye of little faith! He is one of the few commercially viable artists out there that still delivers a quality product. The man is a meticulous perfectionist and that is why it takes him years to drop albums. He has an ear for beats and an eye for talent. Snoop, Em, and 50 all owe a great deal to the man for his work post The Chronic . Dre is tried and true and should continue to make music for as long as he sees fit.
The Doc does not ease everyone’s pain but that is a feat none can conquer. He still has what it takes to rock the charts and put out good to great work pending on your musical tastes. He is cemented in the game as one of the figures on the Mount Rushmore of rap. The man is still relevant even without dropping a ton of content and his music is always worth the wait. Even if his latest project is a tad underwhelming it shall only be likened to a aged Jordan with the 45 on. It is not going to tarnish any legacy and he will go down as one of the greatest contributors to the craft that the game has ever or will ever witness.