Dr. Dre. biography
Born Andre Romelle Young on February 18, 1965 in Compton, California, academics never aroused Dr. Dre like his passion for music did. After receiving his first music mixer on Christmas day of 1984, Dr. Dre naturally transformed his family's apartment into a personal studio where he worked for hours and slowly revealed his unique sound that would later go down in history. He began showing off his skills on the turntables at L.A.'s hottest clubs and eventually joined the World Class Wreckin' Cru for which he acquired the nickname Dr. Dre, the Master of Mixology.
Dr. Dre's career quickly progressed after teaming up with rappers Ice Cube, Eazy-E, MC Ren, the Arabian Prince and Yella to created the rap group Niggaz With Attitude (N.W.A) in 1985. Following the debut of their highly ignored album N.W.A. and the Pose (1987), the group earned the respect of their peers when they dropped their second album Straight Outta Compton (1988), an ingenious record laced with a new beat style and harsh, depicting lyrics. The album went on to sell over 2 million copies and officially established the thug rap genre with riveting hit singles, such as their most notorious single "F*** tha Police," which sparked immediate controversy over its pro-violence attitude towards the LAPD and put the group on the map.
The rising star soon branched off from the group to focus on his solo career and co-create the infamous recording label Death Row Records (1991) with producer Marion "Suge" Knight, a glorified thug. A year later, Dr. Dre released his debut solo album The Chronic and in return, acquired a certified multi-platinum album and his first Grammy Award for Best Rap Solo for his hit single "Let Me Ride" and the album's over all radical lyrics and style. In 1993, Dr. Dre helped rapper Snoop Dogg release his debut album Doggstyle, the first debut album for a single artist to introduce at #1 on the Billboard 200 album charts. He then produced multiple singles on the soundtrack for the drama Above the Rim (1994), starring rapper Tupac, before recording the hit single "Keep Their Heads Ringin" for the comedy Friday (1995), which climbed to #1 on the Hot Rap Tracks charts and #10 on the Billboard Hot 100.
Dr. Dre also helped rapper Tupac launch his career before leaving the label in 1996, stemming from Suge Knight's growing deceitfulness and a mushrooming West Coast-East Coast historical rap feud that later resulted in the death of Tupac and legendary rapper Biggie Smalls. In result, he founded the recording label Aftermath Entertainment, a byproduct of Interscope Records. Instead of working on his solo career, Dr. Dre focused his efforts around other talented artists' aspiring careers, signing his most successful protégé to-date, rapper Eminem. Despite receiving criticism over signing a white rapper, Dr. Dre went through with his plan and introduced the world to the first legit white rapper with the hit album The Slim Shady LP (1999). The album was quickly certified four times platinum and provided a much-needed boost to the label.
On November 16, 1999, Dr. Dre released his much-anticipated second album 2001, which was certified 6x platinum after selling millions of copies and reaching #2 on the Billboard 200 charts by progressively knocking off competitors on both the hip-hop and pop charts. His efforts to change the rap game were finally acknowledge in 2000, with a Grammy Award for Producer of the Year, Non-Classical.
Ensuing the major success of his album, Dr. Dre refrained from working on his much-anticipated, final album Detox and refocused his efforts on producing music for rising musicians, including Eminem's Grammy winning album The Marshall Mathers LP (2000) and Grammy-winning single "The Real Slim Shady." He went on to produce singer Mary J. Blidge's album No More Drama (2001), the hit single "Let Me Blow Ya Mind," sang by rapper Eve and Gwen Stefani, and Eminem's next album The Eminem Show (2002). He continued his success as a producer when he discovered rapper 50 Cent and dropped his debut album Get Rich or Die Tryin' in 2003, prior to releasing Eminem's fourth album Encore.
The release date of Detox has changed on multiple occasions, due to Dr. Dre's producing responsibilities, including his undivided attention to 50 Cent's album Before I Self Destruct (2009) and Eminem's fifth studio album Relapse (2009). Originally set to drop in 2005, the album has since been pushed back to sometime in 2012.
Aside from music, Dr. Dre has developed an acting resume that includes, the crime-thriller Set It Off (1996), the comedy The Wash (2001) and the crime drama Training Day (2001) alongside Academy Award-winner Denzel Washington. In 2008, Dr. Dre launched his own brand of headphones, called Beats by Dr. Dre -- a financial goldmine. In 2009, he announced he would be coming out with an Aftermath Cognac and Vodka, in addition to signing a deal with HP in which Beats By Dr. Dre would be intergraded into HP's laptops. The first HP ENVY 15 Beats limited edition debuted on January 17, 2012, with a value of $2,299.
Although he has not released an album since 1999, Dr. Dre was recently named the highest paid Hip Hop artist and overall musician by Forbes magazine in November 2012. He topped the list of highest paid artists with a net worth of $110 million, which derived from his impressive Beats by Dre headphone line's sales, blowing past runner-up Sean Combs' mere $48 million bank account with little effort.