All Articles Tagged "dr.dre"
While most rappers from the city have no qualms with sharing that they’re from Compton (i.e., Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, Kendrick Lamar, DJ Quik, etc.), there are many other famous names who are from the city too. Some don’t talk about it as much, but they definitely make folks out their proud with their success on TV, in film, on the basketball court and more. Here are nine people from the much talked about city. Some you might have known about, but there are quite a few who definitely surprised us.
While everyone is still reeling over Dr. Dre and Jimmy Lovine’s $70 million donation to the University of Southern California, the duo decided to reveal the new undergraduate program’s mission statement that is causing some confusion.
The new program, named the USC Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young Academy For Arts, Technology and the Business of Innovation, is not only a mouthful to say, but many people believe its program description is pure mumbo jumbo as well, according to ValleyWag.com.
Sam Biddle, a writer for ValleyWag, explained that the more he read USC’s press release for the program, “the less you’ll understand what this program actually consists of, or what it’s really meant to accomplish.”
Weary of the celebrity behind the program, one commenter joked, “I can take a course with the Beyonce Professorship of Entrepreneurial Diva Studies,”as well as the “Barbara Streisand Professorship of Intimacy and Sexuality.” This new program is nearly $43,000 a year and critics are wondering whether this seemingly aimless and wayward program will be worth a student’s investment in his or her future.
However, I think the program produced by the two music industry moguls is wrongly framed as “incoherent” and illogical.
The USC program website comprehensibly presents four core courses of study to curious: “Arts and Entrepreneurship, Technology”, “Design and Marketability”, “Concept and Business Platforms”, and “Creating a Prototype.” The latter curriculum, Creating a Prototype, is the most promising for blossoming careers: it pairs up each student with assigned faculty members who are well-equipped with knowledge from the business and arts world. Mentorship and advice from real-world experts is key to a student’s success in the field of business and marketing. This is what employers look for in their prospective employees.
The program description, in my eyes, is not difficult to interpret. If critics believe that this description is too ambiguous, I’m not sure USC can be any clearer without sounding infantile:
“It will offer a highly select group of students an integrated, four-year course of study that will provide in-depth learning in, engineering, and computer science, fine arts, and graphic design, business, and leadership models.”
While cynics believe Dr. Dre should leave “Andrew Young” at home and stick to selling Beats to the young, hipster consumers, some optimists believe in the positive outcomes that will transpire from this new USC program. Your thoughts?
Dr. Dre ruffled some feathers recently when he joined forces with Jimmy Iovine in donating $70 million to the University of Southern California to create the Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young Academy for Arts, Technology and the Business of Innovation. Some feel that Dr. Dre’s portion, $35 million, would be better used at a Historically Black College or University.
Walter M. Kimbrough, the president of Dillard University, expressed his disappointment in Dre’s decision via an op-ed piece published in the LA Times. “…What if Dre had given $35 million—his half of the USC gift and about 10% of his wealth, according to a Forbes estimate—to an institution that enrolls the very people who supported his career from the beginning?
What’s your opinion on the matter? When celebrities give, are they responsible for giving back to the Black community first before giving to others?
Read more at Essence.com
Hip-hop star Dr. Dre topped the list of Forbes’ Cash Kings as the richest hip hop artist for the year 2012. But now Dre is giving some of his $350 million fortune to the University of Southern California. Dre and music mogul Jimmy Iovine, founder of Interscope Records, are donating $70 million to USC for a new academy that they say will give students the tools they need to break into the rapidly changing music industry, reports The Los Angeles Times.
The gift will be used to create the USC Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young Academy for Arts, Technology and the Business of Innovation. It is set to with a class of 25 students in fall 2014. Students will be able to earn an undergraduate degree from the academy after completing the four-year program, which will feature four core curriculum areas: arts and entrepreneurship; technology, design and marketability; concept and business platform; and creating a prototype. According to the newspaper, the Academy aims to foster entrepreneurship that brings students’ entertainment, technology and business skills into play. Instruction will involve engineering, computer science, fine arts, graphic design, business and leadership training.
“The vision and generosity of Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young will profoundly influence the way all of us perceive and experience artistic media,” USC President C.L. Max Nikias said in a statement.
Also, an unspecified portion of the $70 million donation will go toward construction of future facilities to house the academy.
Iovine and Dre co-created the Beats by Dr. Dre line of headphones that now accounts for more than half the consumer market for high-end headphones, reports The Times. The company’s annual sales in 2011 were $500 million.
Everyone knows it’s the beat that makes the song what it is. So it’s only right that we pay tribute to some of the hottest music producers in Hip Hop then and now. Check them out.
Mr. Mustard on the beat! I know some of you thought he said buss it on the beat, but he was building his brand dropping his own name. Very catchy! DJ Mustard has produced songs for Tyga — “Rack City” and 2 Chainz — “I’m different”. This guy right here knows how to get the party started.
Pass Or Play? Alicia Keys Dances (*Gasp*!) And Reps For New York In The Video For The Uptempo Jam, “New Day”
Even though Alicia Keys just released a new music video for the sultry jam, “Fire We Make” with Maxwell last week, there’s no stopping the girl now, as she just dropped the video for her Swizz Beatz and Dr. Dre-produced jam, “New Day.” (Not to be confused with the 50 Cent song that her vocals were featured on, as well as Dr. Dre’s.) Guess she finally realized that “Girl On Fire” had its moment and it was time to move on like five months ago.
In the video, the beautiful singer can be seen meeting up with her background dancers in an ally to bust a move, doing so in a hot bustier-type beaded top and black pants (can we agree that her hair these days is just fabulous??). She’s also seen in concert performing the song while flashing images of New York City go by and an image of her face, lyrics to the track, and the title of the song is slowly but surely spray painted on a wall. It’s definitely a fashionable video and it makes me appreciate the song a bit more, but I’ll probably stick to “Fire We Make” for now, just because Maxwell is my husband and what not…
But anywho, check out the video below and let us know what you think. Is it a pass or play?
Which song would you like to see her make into a video next from her Girl on Fire album?
A new Forbes list puts Diddy on top of a list of the wealthiest artists in hip-hop with an estimated wealth of $580 million. Most of his money comes from his Ciroc deal rather than music and, Forbes says, the vodka is riding a wave of popularity that would significantly add to Diddy’s wealth if Diageo ever sold the brand.
Coming in second is Jay-Z with $475 million and Dr. Dre is in third with $350 million. Perhaps the biggest surprise (to me, at least) is Birdman at number four, but it totally makes sense. His $150 million fortune comes from Cash Money/Young Money, which has artists like Nicki Minaj and Drake signed to it. And rounding out the five is 50 Cent.
According to Entertainment Weekly, all five of these artists were on this list last year, in this order. But all of them have more money this year, most significantly Dr. Dre who has $90 million more to kick around this year.
Dr. Dre & 2 Live Crew Then, Rick Ross Now: Are The Risque Lyrics In Today’s Hip-Hop THAT Bad Compared To In The Past?
The other day I saw a hilarious SomeeCard meme that read: “I can’t believe the music that you kids listen to nowadays. What happened to the good wholesome songs like Push It and Me So Horney?”
That got me thinking about Rick Ross. From Hello Beautiful:
“Known for his braggadocious lyrics, showboating style and dangling stomach, Rick Ross stomped all over the lines of inappropriate, disgusting and misogynistic content with the release of his verse on Rocko’s song “You Don’t Even Know It”: “Put Molly all in her champagne, she ain’t even know it/I took her home and I enjoyed that, she ain’t even know it,” the MMG bawse rapped with confidence.”
It’s no secret how I feel about our favorite ex-correctional officer turned “BAWSE.” But this is sort of Ross’ schtick, right? Say something inflammatory, watch people get mad and reap the benefits financially from the controversy? Remember last year, when Ross took us on a swagged-out voyage through the slums of Nigeria for his video to “Hold Me Back?” Or the time that he tried to woo the ladies with this romantic line from Usher’s “Lemme See,” “Chanel hoodie on looking like Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman don’t want it.”
Move over Barry White! Because nothing says let’s get it on more than having your dude tell you that you remind him of a murdered teenager. Oh, and let’s not forget that Ross cover art for his The Black Bar Mitzvah mixtape, featuring himself draped in a fur coat, centered inside of the Star of David, not only raised the eyebrows of the Jewish community, but also ruffling the feathers of the nefarious Gangster Disciples, who too use the symbol as part of their own logo. The man obviously has no filter, nor does he understand (or maybe care about) boundaries. And at this point, I would be more surprised if Ross had something more thoughtful to say.
Yet if we are being honest here, Hip-Hop has always said some pretty messed up things. I freaking love Biggie Smalls, but I remember cringing like hell when I heard him say, “I’m using rubbers so they won’t trace the semen/The black demon, got the little hookers screaming/Because you know I love it young, fresh and green/With no hair in between, know what I mean?” Yes, I know what you mean and that is not appropriate. Ice Cube was my favorite quasi-conscious West Coast rapper from back in the day, but aren’t we being hypocritical when we chastise Lil Wayne for his “whip it like a slave” lyric and not thinking about when Cube said, “So don’t believe what Ren say/Cuz he’s goin’ out like “Kunta” Kinte/But I got a whip for ya Toby…”?
Too $hort made an entire career out of his misogyny. And there was no other more gangster rapper than Scarface. I remember in high school, one of the biggest dancehall songs at the time was Sasha’s “Kill the B***h.” According to her Wiki page, Sasha has since rediscovered Jesus and will no longer perform the song that made her a ghetto household name. But that doesn’t change the fact that she once thought nothing wrong with mimicking sex through half of the song. Neither did my best friend and I, who used to take pride in the fact that we knew all the words to Dr. Dre’s The Chronic album, and would sit in the back of our classroom, flowing to B***hes Ain’t S**t. We swore up and down that since we weren’t those type of girls, those lyrics we belted out out had nothing to do with us. It would take years later to learn that some dudes, despite our best efforts at respectability, still couldn’t tell the difference. Even our beloved Tupac, who most try to remember canonizing women in “Dear Mama” and “Keep Ya Head Up” (“…cause Tupac care, if don’t nobody else care”) also reminded us that, he’s only got one night in town so basically, “Break out or be clowned.” While being the agent of and the voice of the downtrodden and politically conscience who screamed “fight the power,” Hip-Hop too has always offered a welcoming home to voices who only wanted to talk about the money, clothes and most importantly, the ho*s. And we have sort of been kind of okay with that for a while now.
We tried to tell ourselves that there was a bigger purpose; that these rappers were not just appealing to the rebellious side of our natures but also daring to speak on the authenticity of what is taboo. Or as stated by Jay-Z (with assistance from Dream Hampton) in his book, Decoded:
“Hip-hop has always been controversial, and for good reason. The music is meant to be provocative—which doesn’t mean it’s necessarily obnoxious, but it is (mostly) confrontational, and more than that, it’s dense with multiple meanings. Great rap should have all kinds of unresolved layers that you don’t necessarily figure out the first time you listen to it. Instead it plants dissonance in your head. You can enjoy a song that knocks in the club or has witty punch lines the first time you hear it. But great rap retains mystery. It leaves s**t rattling around in your head that won’t make sense till the fifth or sixth time through. It challenges you. Which is another reason hip-hop is so controversial: People don’t bother trying to get it. The problem isn’t in the rap or the rapper or the culture. The problem is that so many people don’t even know how to listen to the music.”
Yet I don’t really think there is no deeper significance or much else to “get” from Ross’ lyrics, other than that this hopefully fictitious woman in this song was date-raped – and she didn’t even know it. And I think that is the point: rappers recognize that you don’t have to say much of substance or even be lyrically inclined these days. You just have to be provocative and obnoxious. And I feel like like our inability to call it out or acknowledge the music genre’s shortcomings earlier on paved the way for Ross and other industry folks to commodify and repackage the art form into a cash crop of the most garish, misogynistic and overall opulent images and lyrics. Instead of checking the rappers of past, many of us yelled foul over what we felt was the government’s attempt at denying 2 Live Crew constitutional rights to be as narsty as they wanted to be. We forgot later on that the group’s Supreme Court victory would later be symbolically used to justify why it was okay for Snoop Dogg to walk across mainstream stages with women on leashes and later why it would become acceptable for Ross to rhyme nonchalantly about drugging and sexually assaulting a woman.
Swizz Beatz recently signed on with Monster as an investor and member of the advisory board. Monster is the former maker of the Beats by Dre headphones that have done record number since their release.
The relationship between Beats and Monster was severed after Beats declined to renew the contract last year. However, at that point, they had acquired half of the $1 billion headphone market in the US. A portion of the company was sold to HCT, ultimately making Dr. Dre the world’s highest paid musician.
The relationship was certainly beneficial for Monster as well, since Dr Dre’s team made all the right moves getting his Beats headphones into the hands of every musician and on every video shoot through a deal with Universal Music Group. So this is certainly a hard act to follow. But now Monster is forced to move on and find a Dr. Dre replica of sorts. And that’s where Swizz Beatz comes in.
He is another high profile music producer with over 1.2 million followers on Twitter with a (more?) famous wife, Alicia Keys. With their connections and relationships he may have been a good choice to keep Monster in the game. According to Forbes there has been not a set release date for the headphones by Swizz, but with Swizz’s experience and success in music other business ventures he might just have a chance at making Monster another hot pair of headphones.
Do you think his can compare with Dre’s?
Celebrities seemingly live the good life with millions of adoring fans and millions more in the bank. When tragedy strikes their lives and they unexpectedly lose a loved one, we are reminded that stars are human after all and mourn just like us.
Rapper/singer/actress Queen Latifah suffered a personal loss during the early stages in her rap career. Back in 1992, the Newark native’s world was rocked when her older brother Lancelot was killed while riding the very same motorcycle his famous baby sister recently purchased for him. 20 years after his death, Queen Latifah, still struggles with her grief and said losing her brother “was like suffering an amputation.”