Will Dr. Dre finally drop his “final” album on potheads' highest holy day? According to a video posted to Twitter by producer Just Blaze, Dre hints that Detox will finally see the light of day on April 20th, aka 4/20. Dre's long-delayed album was first announced in 2002, and will reportedly feature Eminem, Snoop Dogg, Akon, Jay-z, and La Roux. Dre hasn't released a studio album since 1999 when he dropped The Chronic 2001. Dre told XXL that his next album will be his final recording: “As far as me going into the mic booth, that shit is over. I'm getting older… I'm always going to talent-scout and try to find new artists to work with. But, yeah, that's it.” Despite Dre's lead single “Kush” and the fact that the album is reportedly being released on National Weed Day, the rapper/producers says the album is not all about the greens: “It's about smoking weed, but I don't want people to think that is what my album is about. This is the only song with that kind of content. It's not a representation of what the album is.” Witness Dre's hazy announcement:
Dre talked with XXL in December about the 12 year wait for Detox:
So Detox is really coming?
Yeah, that's the only reason why I'm here. I'm out here in Detroit, getting some work done with Em on the project. I've been out here for about two and a half months. Yeah, that's it. I'm tryna get it done. I'm really feeling it now. My energy has been back and forth with the record, tussling with doing it out of obligation, as opposed to doing it because I really feel it. My feelings about it have been going up and down. Now I'm in that place where I'm really feeling it, and it's coming out right. It's like, Yeah, I'm excited about it.
So there has been a point where it felt like an obligation?
Absolutely. Actually, throughout the process, the majority of it has been that, doing it out of obligation. I think this record is gonna help feed a lot of families. You know what I'm saying? So that part is hanging over my head. The only part that has been pushing me back is just the fact that I'm getting older, and certain things to talk about… But I can incorporate other artists, new artists with this record, to say some of the things I won't say. It's been a little tussle in that area also, just because of age and being able to identify with the younger audience.
It's interesting you bring up age. Aging can be an issue for some hip-hop artists. It's hard for older artists to remain relevant. But it seems like, when it comes to Dr. Dre, age is not as much of an issue.
Right. I'm fortunate in that way. [Laughs]
Why do you think that's the case?
I really believe it has a lot to do with my mystique. I have a natural mystique about myself, and I think people are intrigued by that. I think that's all it is. And I'm real particular about the things that I do, how I'm presented, and my image. I make mistakes here and there. But like I said, I'm real particular about what I put out. I always try to make sure that everything I attach myself to is quality. So I think that's another reason. And it's been that way throughout, from the beginning. I think the public knows for a fact that, when I do something, it's at least worth checking out.
What about the element of getting jaded with age? Isn't there a point where you've had so much experience, where you start to say, “This shit is stupid”? How do you stay interested?
You know what? I say that quite a few times in the studio, to be perfectly honest with you. I've been through that thing several times, where I'm like, “You know what? I quit. I'm not doing this. Everything is starting to sound the same.” But like I said, I have good people around. I have people that push, like, “No, no. Let's do this.” Em, for example. My wife, of course. Jimmy. All these people are like, “Nah, nah, c'mon. You could do it. You could do it.” I experiment. Every now and then, something corny would pop out, just from experimenting. That's going to happen if you're creating. But nobody will ever hear that shit, hopefully. [Laughs]
Were you ever going to trash Detox and start another project? Or just trash everything altogether and never do another project?
The thought crossed my mind several times.
To leave altogether?
Quit? “I'm done”?
“I'm going to retire”?
I don't ever see myself retiring totally from music, because I have a genuine love and passion for it. But as far as me going into the mic booth, that shit is over. I'm always going to talent scout and try to find new artists to work with. But, yeah, that's it. I don't see myself doing it the way I'm doing it now. I'm in the studio at least five or six days a week for 16, 18 hours. I think I'm going to back off a little bit and spend some time with the family. But I'm always going to make records… It's almost–I still feel like it's, like, a high for me. I always feel like that day I'm not in the studio could've been the day I made my best record. So I still have that thirst. But as far as getting on the microphone and being an artist, that's over for me. I just want to produce.
So that means that you're not on the mic on Detox? Or just after Detox?