How Dr. Dre Discovered The Best Rappers of All Time
Lil’ Wayne: Now you signed Snoop, Em, Kendrick Lamar, shout out Anderson… now what’s the process in discovering talent for you, what’s the process how you do that?
Dr. Dre: You know what, there isn’t necessarily a process. I would say 90% of artists that I’ve been introduced to I’ve been introduced to through other people.
[It just depends on if I like it] I was introduced to Eminem through Jimmy Iovine, I was introduced to Snoop through my stepbrother Warren G.
It’s always somebody who’s introduced to me through somebody else and if we click…
Well, of course the talent has to be there first of all… and if in the studio and that synergy is there… then I go from there.
I really like to create relationships instead of just working on a project, you know? And everybody I’ve worked with up until now, we’re still friends… we’re really close.Lil’ Wayne and Dr. Dre Discussing How He Discovers The Best Rappers of All-Time
In this clip, Dr. Dre exposes his 3 step process (that we’re about to reveal) for discovering the best rappers of all time.
Demonstrates a calculated and studyable series of steps when discovering the best rappers of all time, and we’ve just seen step #1:
#1 The Talent Has To Be There First
Talent in Hip-Hop is a funny word.
Often amateur fans or struggle rappers who love to hear themselves talk think that “talent” means you just come out of the womb spitting hot fiyah like Dylan…
But not so. Often talent is a short hand for producers like Dr. Dre to demonstrate a consistency of high level creative output developed over years of a training, experimentation, and pushing through the initial difficult of learning how to rap.
Listen to Eminem describe how he actually SUCKED when he first started rapping, wasn’t good, and needed to keep going to “develop his talent”:
“Why did I become who I was? First I was a fan of the music, before I even thought about rapping.
LL cool J was the one who made me first start writing rhymes. I was like 12, 13 maybe.
And it sucked, I wasn’t good, but I had to keep practicing, practicing, and practicing.
I gave it up for a little while then I started up again when I was like 15. Started be able to kind of put songs together, and then I was like, I’m starting… I was never really good at much else.
Once I found out I was decent at something, I just kind of focused and went for it.”Eminem on Hotboxin’ Podcast
Who are we to disagree with Eminem that he wasn’t “born with it” but rather “GREW WITH IT” through consistently ‘practicing, practicing, and practicing’ as he put it until he was able to put songs together.
Putting songs together is one of the first major benchmarks for true, world-class level rap stardom (not just being able to spit bars)… and that’s one of the reasons Eminem tagged it as a crucial development in his goal to become one of the best rappers of all time.
If you are a rapper watching this, check out our free video course “The Top 20 Songwriting Secrets of Professional Rappers” to learn exactly how to make sure your songwriting is up to par for a pro level career by clicking HERE…
…But the most important thing to understand in step #1 is when Dre says “the talent has to be there”, that isn’t the same thing as saying “you are either born with it or you’re not”…
Often you need years in the lab to be good enough to “click” with Dr. Dre, as described in…
#2 It Takes Confidence To “Click”
“I had a studio in my house at the time and I had went and put some samples together and a couple of things and a drum machine and I invited him over…
I was like, ‘Man listen this sample together, tell me if you like it…’ and I hit the drum machine… and maybe 2-3 seconds went by and he just went… ‘HI! MY NAME IS! MY NAME IS!’ Like YO! Stop! Sh*ts hot. That’s what happened our FIRST day in the first few minutes of us being in the studio”Dr. Dre On Meeting Eminem For The First Time
Just imagine you’re Eminem, right…
And you’ve spent your whole life idolizing producers and rappers such as Dr. Dre.
At first you sucked at rapping, you actually gave it up, but once you were able to put songs together, win battles, and release projects good enough to get the attention of industry titans such as Jimmy Iovine…
You now have a level of confidence you developed through your practice that when it’s time to demonstrate your skills… you can hear a beat IMMEDIATELY and think of what would become a top 50 U.S. billboard charting single.
If you really think about it, that confidence “you”, meaning Shady didn’t come from just being a dope rapper from the minute you came out of the womb, it came from years of dedication, and organized thought.
It wouldn’t be a stretch of the imagination to believe that when Dr. Dre says he “clicks” with somebody, he’s as much talking about how he evaluates that “confidence” and “talent” to immediately start working and hustling when they first meet in the studio.
#3 “Put Up Another One”
Big Boy: What was the relationship with 50 Cent, how did you grab 50 Cent?
Dr. Dre: You know what, Eminem… he introduced me to 50 and 50 was incredible when we first went in the studio together for the first time… my experience working with 50 is we spent 7 days in the studio… for my entire half, he would write it, spit, and be like ‘put up another one, put up another one’
Big Boy: At that moment, did you feel like, yeah, he got it?
Dr. Dre: Yeah, I was like yeah… it was really creativeDr. Dre and Big Boy In The Morning Discussing 50 Cent
The old line, “quality over quantity” doesn’t mean “make a small quantity of tracks in order to wait for quality.”
The ability to create a massive QUANTITY of tracks in order for producers such as Dr. Dre to have the creative luxury of choosing the best QUALITY of tracks is really what’s at play in this quote here.
The best rappers of all time whether it be the artists we saw at the Super Bowl such as 50 Cent, Eminem, and Snoop Dogg create large QUANTITIES of music so that the best producers of all time such as Dr. Dre can craft the perfect project.
Therefore the last step in the Dr. Dre discovery process is searching for artists that are hungry enough to create track after track so that a cohesive body of work can be picked from the best of the best.
This “put up another one” attitude is one of the main secrets for discovering legendary artists… and indeed discovering the “next big thing” in any creative endeavor you’re going to take part in involving other participants.