Dr. Dre is a man who has made such an indelible mark on hip-hop, and consequently popular culture, that generations will remember him for his contributions. From bringing underground hip-hop subgenre “gangsta rap” into mainstream with his group N.W.A., to introducing the world to the music of Eminem and Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre has perhaps done more for hip-hop than anyone in his generation.
In decades to follow, when people will talk about the artists who made hip-hop what it is, they will probably mention Dr. Dre in the same breath as Tupac, Biggie, and Jay-Z.
Now that the life-story of Dr. Dre’s group N.W.A. has been brought to the big screen in Straight Outta Compton, we cast an eye on ten amazing rumors about the hip-hop star which you might not believe are actually true.
- Dr. Dre did not know Eminem was white when he heard him for the first time
When Dr. Dre heard Eminem for the first time, he thought the rapper was black. In an interview with Vibe Magazine, Dr. Dre confessed that not knowing Eminem’s ethnicity in the beginning actually worked to the rapper’s advantage.
“When I heard Em for the first time, I didn’t even know he was White. I just knew I wanted to work with him. And that kind of actually made it better for me, because it was so different.”
- Dr. Dre started producing music when he could hardly walk
While this is more the stuff of urban legends than a rumor, it is true that Dr. Dre began playing vinyl singles at his mother’s parties when he was only four.
- Dr. Dre has spent time in jail
According to Exclaim,Dr. Dre did spend time in jail after running up a number of unpaid parking tickets. Dr. Dre turned to local drug dealer Eric Wright in the hope that his clout would help him get bail, but Wright had a condition — if he did manage to get Dr. Dre out on bail, he would have to make music for a label Wright was planning to start. Dr. Dre agreed, and Ice Cube gave Wright the MC name Eazy-E.
- Dr. Dre has many rapper relatives
While Dr. Dre does not have only rappers in his family, there are some prominent names out there — Warren G is Dr. Dre’s stepbrother — while his eldest son, Curtis Young, is also a rapper who goes by the name Hood Surgeon.
- Dr. Dre has found his next protégé
While this could only be a rumor which time might morph into truth, there are very credible murmurs that a rapper going by the name Justin Mohrle is Dr. Dre’s next protégé. According to Capital Xtra, Justin, who goes by the name JT, has reportedly moved indefinitely to California on Dr. Dre’s orders, and is currently working on his first album. Meanwhile, Justin certainly thinks his time his fast approaching.
Justus will be heard
— Justus (@officiallovejt) August 6, 2015
- Dr. Dre’s dad was an R&B fan
Dr. Dre’s original name, as many of you would be aware, is Andre Romelle Young. But what you might not know is that his middle name, Romelle, is inspired from his teenage dad’s amateur R&B group, The Romells. His father, Theodore Young, was 16 when he had Dr. Dre, and separated from his mother soon after his birth.
- Dr. Dre has made more money from his penchant for entrepreneurship than his music
While this may hardly come as a surprise to many, the truth is that most of Dr. Dre’s wealth has come from his label of high-end headphones, Beats by Dre, which was reportedly sold to Apple for a whopping $3 billion last year. In 2014, Dr. Dre reportedly earned an unprecedented $20 a second. Not all rappers are as lucky.
- Dr. Dre’s The Chronic was not his bestselling album
Believe it or not, Dr. Dre’s follow-up album — 2001— was a way bigger hit — becoming certified sextuple Platinum.
- Dr. Dre was into electronic music before hip-hop
Before he was in the N.W.A., Dr. Dre was in a group called World Class Wreckin’ Cru, which was an electronic funk group.
- Dr. Dre is a neither a Crip nor a Blood
In Compton, it is believed that you are either a Crip or a Blood, two of the most significant gangs operating in the area. There have been endless debates whether Dr. Dre belonged to one of the two gangs, and though this cannot be backed with unquestionable evidence, the truth is that Dr. Dre has himself never made clear his affiliation to either gang. In which case, it would be safe to presume that the richest man in hip-hop does not intend to disclose his inclinations any time soon, or maybe, he does not hold an allegiance to either of those groups.
Do you of agree with the list? Are there other rumors about Dr. Dre you know are true? Leave your suggestions below.
[Photo by Christopher Polk / Getty Images]