Billboard Names Dr. Dre Greatest Rap Producer of All Time

Towards the year of the 50th hip hop anniversary, Billboard published the list of the 25 most important and influential hip hop producers. Dr. Dre tops their list.

The Billboards magazine staffers have chosen a rather eclectic bunch to put on the list, from pioneers to new-generation sensations. Heir Top 5, though, doesn’t show this range, focusing on the historical middle ground and quantifiable commercial success. It goes like this:

1. Dr. Dre

2. Kanye West
3. DJ Premier
4. RZA
5. The Neptunes

Dr. Dre - YouTube

The entry describing Dr. Dre’s contribution is unironically complimentary. It emphasises not only Dre’s direct production highlights but also his role as a mentor. Gail Mitchell penned these two paragraphs:

Starting his music career in 1985 as a member of the electro-hop group World Class Wreckin’ Cru, Dr. Dre — born André Young — has since become the most important producer/artist in rap’s 50-year history. The Compton, Calif. native rose to prominence as the co-founder of the seminal West Coast gangsta rap group N.W.A, producing genre game-changers like the protest anthem “Fuck tha Police.” He then broke from the group to work on his trailblazing solo debut album, 1992’s The Chronic (including the hits “Nuthin’ but a ‘G’ Thang” and “Dre Day”) and helped usher the G-funk sound into the cultural conversation. In tandem with the release of his second solo masterpiece, 1999’s 2001, the self-described “Master of Mixology” further expanded and shaped his penchant for using live musicians and dabbling in other genres as he continues to foster his ever-evolving production style.

Dr. Dre on Why He “Bowed Out” of Working With Michael Jackson, Prince – The  Hollywood Reporter

Along the way, the seven-time Grammy winner has produced a treasure trove of hit singles and albums, such as his and 2Pac’s “California Love,” Snoop Dogg’s riveting Doggystyle (the first debut album by an artist to bow at No. 1 on the Billboard 200), 50 Cent’s “In Da Club” and Eminem’s “The Real Slim Shady,” the latter two with artists signed to the sharp-eared Dre’s Aftermath label. In addition to collaborating on projects with hip-hop and R&B luminaries Mary J. Blige, Kendrick Lamar and Anderson .Paak, Dr. Dre has also worked to pass the torch to future generations through such producer mentees as his stepbrother Warren G, Daz Dillinger, Scott Storch and Mike Elizondo.


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