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Dr. Dre: The Biography Hardcover – March 17, 2007


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Da Capo Press; First Edition edition (March 17, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1560259213
  • ISBN-13: 978-1560259213
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.4 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #335,313 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Prolific rap chronicler Ro presents the most comprehensive treatment yet of a pivotal figure and founder of the rap industry. Dre has had a hand in nearly every development, feud, and trend since the early 1990s, when he and his seminal hip-hop aggregation N.W.A. (stands for Niggaz with Attitude, in case you've forgotten) emerged from Compton, California. He later managed, produced, or mentored superstars Busta Rhymes, Rakim, and 50 Cent and guaranteed platinum sellers Snoop Dog and Eminem. Ro uncovers a more reflective and introspective side of a man who has certainly seen it all, as far as the meteoric rise and contentious history of rap is concerned. In 1988, N.W.A. released Straight Outta Compton, arguably the first gangsta rap album. Its provocative tracks brought radio bannings and public hand-wringing about the threat to society N.W.A., its songs, and its ilk represented. It made N.W.A. notorious and wealthy and led to the founding of Death Row Records, the East-West rap feud, and the gangland-style murders of rival rappers. Dre maintained a thoughtful composure. Probably one of the 10 best books on rap. Mike Tribby
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Review

"Prolific rap chronicler Ro presents the most comprehensive treatment yet of a pivotal figure and founder of the rap industry. Dre has had a hand in nearly every development , feud, and trend since the early 1990s, when he and his seminal hip hop aggregation N.W.A. (stands for Niggaz With Attitude, in case you've forgotten) emerged from Compton, California. He later managed, produced or mentored superstars Busta Rhymes, Rakim, and 50 Cent, and guaranteed platinum sellers Snoop Dog and Eminem. Ro uncovers a more reflective and introspective side of a man who has certainly seen it all, as far as the meteoric rise and contentious history of rap is concerned. In 1988, N.W.A. released Straight Outta Compton, arguably the first gangsta rap album. Its provocative tracks brought radio bannings and public hand-wringing about the threat to society N.W.A., its songs, and its ilk represented. It made N.W.A. notorious and wealthy, and led to the founding of Death Row Records, the east-west rap feud, and the gangland-style murders of rival rappers. Dre maintained a thoughtful composure. Probably one of the 10 best books on rap. -- Booklist, April 15, 2007

Customer Reviews

Ronnin Ro really stole the show with his version of the Dr Dre bio!
R. Stewart
I would have liked to have seen a smoother flow of the biography where it didn't seem years overlapped and clarity of when some things took place.
The RAWSISTAZ Reviewers
It is a book written to inform and tell a story, rather than just re-count the life of a hip-hop legend.
Subversive

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Ghost in the Matrix on March 10, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Ronin Ro is probably perferct for hip-hop journalism since his style of writing seems to borrow the sampling technique found in most rap music. If you've followed Dre's press career, no matter how sparse, you'll quickly realize that most, if not all the quotes in this book, are "samples" from other magazines. Like an expert hip-hop producer, Ro chops up all the press and then brilliantly re-arranges it all into a coherent and remarkably seamless story. While a lot of biographies do this, they don't pull it off to the extent that Ro does.

I am grateful that this book brings all of those previously disparate pieces under the same roof. Having the puzzle finally put together reveals a man who really had to fight uphill to become the Producer that he is today. In a lot of ways, according to this book, Dre's rise to fame seem destined, but destiny sometimes seems to have taken the rockiest road.

If you haven't followed Dre's career closely, or if you simply don't remember the reportage of Dre over the years, than this book will feel fresh or, at the least, a re-fresher on the years spanning the life of hip hop's most noted producer. And in someways that's the danger of this book: because it pulls so heavily from pre-existing interviews, there's nothing really new to be presented here. But that's hardly the fault of the author, since Dre, being press shy, probably will never give a biographer any new material to work with. And maybe all that there is to say about Dre's past has been said before, and the most we can expect than is a creative narrative and Re-mix of those words.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By MAXIMILLIAN MUHAMMAD HALL OF FAME on June 3, 2007
Format: Hardcover
this Book is a Good Chop on Dr.Dre's career as the Best Producer in Rap Music History period. Dr.Dre has often been a Mysterious and often a quite figure despite all the controversy that has often been associated with him,but make no mistakes about it, Dr.Dre is as close to a forrest Gump figure in Rap Music history as you can get. He started out with World class Wreckin crew,but His first real claim to fame was with NWA. NWA were the Sex Pistols of Rap Music and any other Musical figure that was considered a Outlaw Bad Boy type. NWA changed the whole landscape of Rap Music forever with there debut Album 'Straight outta compton". there impact and effect is still felt on Rap Music to this day. Dre's Beats and trademark Synth Grooves with the Low string vibes are part of his formula along with catchy past Hooks and grooves of yesteryear that have made him the Quincy Jones of Rap Music. and as a talent scout He is the Man who Put Snoop Dogg and Eminem truly on the Map with his touch. Ronin Ro does a really good job at chopping and creating a Book that flows really well. Dr.Dre is One of the Most Important Musical Figures over the past 25 years. also add in the fact that He was part of Ruthless Records which was Owned by the Late Eazy E,and then Dre Help Form Death Row Records and then his own Aftermath Records. either as a Artist,producer, CEO and conceptionalist Dr.Dre has had a strong hand in creating so much that has taken Rap Music to the next level and that makes the Man a Trail-Blazer of his time this Book covers his personal losses,his drama with Ruthless,Death Row and Sug Knight also his battles within the Politics of the Music Industry and being a Black Man. a Good read.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By mrspeters504 on November 14, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
SO DISAPPOINTED in this book. The cover is the best thing about it. That gets it one star. I will wait for Dre's autobiography. He's a private person and all this book was was this guy cutting and pasting other past articles about Dr. Dre. I chose it for book club and was embarrassed because it was so bad only one person completed it and it wasn't me!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By The RAWSISTAZ Reviewers on July 28, 2007
Format: Hardcover
DR. DRE is the life story of the rise of a prolific hip hop producer and his struggles to succeed in the ever changing music industry. Ro attempts to share with readers Andre Young aka Dr. Dre's life from birth until now.

Born on February 18, 1965 to teenage parents, Dr. Dre's life was not an easy one living in California. However, his mom and stepfather provided a safe environment, but could not truly motivate Dr. Dre with his education. They purchased him his first mixer and found music was his motivation. From his early days as a DJ until his becoming a Grammy awarding winning producer, Dr. Dre has had to deal with change in the industry standards and even the violence he rapped about as part of NWA. He also dealt with tragedies such as the death of his brother Tyrell. Included in this biography are bits and pieces of a more personal Dr. Dre including his numerous children and the change his marriage made in how he viewed music. Impressive was the ability to chronicle how Dr. Dre rapped about life in the streets when he wasn't from the streets in the sense of being a gang banger or dealer, as well as how the hip hop changed from gangster rap to lyrics of excess and a lot less shocking in its nature.

Ro's biography of Dr. Dre seems inclusive, but at times stiff and jagged in its delivery. The life story seems to be based on information already reported in different mediums with little coming from Dr. Dre or others involved in his life. I would have liked to have seen a smoother flow of the biography where it didn't seem years overlapped and clarity of when some things took place.
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More About the Author

After penning a column for Dance Music Report magazine, Ronin Ro began a groundbreaking run in The Source. From here, Ro contributed to SPIN, Rolling Stone, VIBE, Rap Pages, XXL, Vanity Fair, Playboy, USA Today, The Los Angeles Times, and more. The New York City-based Author then went on to write eight Books, including the classic Have Gun Will Travel, the definitive Jack Kirby bio Tales to Astonish, Raising Hell (containing original interviews with Run-D.M.C. and others), Dr. Dre: The Biography, the controversial novella Street Sweeper and Prince: Inside the Music and the Masks.