Nearly sixteen years after his last album release, Dr. Dre will be releasing Compton: A Soundtrack By Dr. Dre on Friday, Aug. 7, exclusively on iTunes. The rapper, who is now the richest man in hip hop after selling his company Beats by Dre to Apple for a whopping $3 billion, announced this new album during his radio show, The Pharmacy, on Apple Music’s Beats 1 radio on Saturday evening.
Don’t let the name fool you, however, Dre has been clear that this is not just a soundtrack for the upcoming movie, Straight Out of Compton, rather it is a soundtrack for the city itself. Inspired by the process of making the movie which tells the story of rap group N.W.A’s rise to fame, Dr. Dre nixed the anticipated Detox album that he has been threatening to release for years. He has been calling this album his “grand finale”.
Dr. Dre only has a single solo track on the much anticipated album. The long list of collaborators includes several rap industry magnates, like Eminem and Kendrick Lamar, as well as quite a few lesser-known artists, many of whom seeming to be getting their big break by being featured by Dre. The Source Magazine reports that the play-list will be as follows:
2) Talk About It (feat. King Mez & Justus)
3) Genocide (feat. Kendrick Lamar, Marsha Ambrosius & Candice Pillay)
4) It’s All On Me (feat. Justus & BJ the Chicago Kid)
5) All In a Day’s Work (feat. Anderson Paak & Marsha Ambrosius)
6) Darkside/Gone (feat. King Mez, Marsha Ambrosius & Kendrick Lamar)
7) Loose Cannons (feat. Xzibit & COLD 187um)
8) Issues (feat. Ice Cube & Anderson Paak)
9) Deep Water (feat. Kendrick Lamar & Justus)
10) Jon Connor – One Shot One Kill (feat. Snoop Dogg)
11) The Game – Just Another Day (feat. Asia Bryant)
12) For the Love of Money (feat. Jill Scott & Jon Connor)
13) Satisfaction (feat. Snoop Dogg, Marsha Ambrosius & King Mez)
14) Animals (feat. Anderson Paak)
15) Medicine Man (feat. Eminem, Candice Pillay & Anderson Paak)
16) Talking To My Diary
It’s no surprise to see Eminem’s name on the list (if you didn’t know, Dr. Dre launched Em’s career by signing him to Aftermath records in 1998) and I expect that their collaboration might get personal in the same vein as their 2011 song “I Need A Doctor”. Most of us probably have an idea of what to expect from Eminem, Snoop, Kendrick Lamar, Ice Cube, and Xzibit, but many of the other collaborators are much lesser known, making me wonder if Dr. Dre was more generous with “featuring” credits than other rappers usually are (you know how often the artists who sing the chorus and/or hook don’t get a featuring credit on the title of the track).
Marsha Ambrosius shows up on three of Dre’s tracks and if you haven’t heard of her you may be familiar with the group that she was one half of: Floetry. “Justus” is also on three tracks but You Tube and google searches don’t reveal much about this mystery artist. King Mez is on two tracks and, according to his last.fm bio he is an artist with three solid mix tapes under his belt who has managed to “differentiate himself with a righteous delivery unsullied with superficial content” – based on listening to a few of his tracks I look forward to hearing what he has laid down with Dre.
The list of collaborators goes on and on. Dr. Dre’s track record with Aftermath records proves he has an ear and eye for talent so it is safe to assume that at least a couple of the unknowns featured on Compton are destined for superstardom. Given that he waited so long to release it I am sure that Dr. Dre’s “Grand Finale” is a true masterpiece and that fans have some groundbreaking and epic music coming their way.