Dre Says N.W.A Reunion Album Off For Now

Pioneering hip-hop group N.W.A have shelved plans to release a reunion

album anytime soon, after early sessions for the LP yielded

disappointing results, Dr. Dre said Thursday.

"We got a couple things down, nothing that I'm happy with, so they don't

mean anything," the superstar producer and rapper said.

The group was unable to continue working on an N.W.A album, because its

members were all due on other projects, Dre said.

"The status of N.W.A right now remains in limbo, because everybody

that's supposed to be a part of this record has their own careers, and

they're out doing their things. [Ice] Cube is working on a big

special-effect movie, Snoop [Dogg] has a record coming out and is gonna

promote that, and I'm working with my new artists, trying to do my

thing. I have no idea when that record's gonna happen, or if it's gonna

happen."

Dre, Cube and M.C. Ren are holdovers from the original N.W.A lineup,

while Snoop Dogg was subbing for the late MC Eazy-E, who died in 1995 of

complications from AIDS. The revamped group made its debut at a

Farmclub.com taping in March.

Founded in 1986, N.W.A provided a template for gangsta rap with 1989's

Straight Outta Compton. The group fell apart when Dre left for a

solo career in 1992.

With this incarnation of N.W.A sidelined, Dre is busy working on new

projects for his Aftermath label, having recently signed hip-hop vet

Rakim, as well as newcomer Shari Watson, who calls herself Truth Hurts.

Dre is helping the St. Louis songstress ready her debut album, Ain't

That the Truth?

"I've been looking for a female singer for about eight years now, and I

finally found [her]," Dre said. "We've been working really hard to make

her stuff come out proper, and we're gonna change the course of music

again. I can't even call it R&B, cause R&B is rap's bitch. It's some

other sh--. It's somethin' else. It's singing to my rhythm, and it's

definitely gonna make everybody that's out there doing R&B music go back

in the studio and rethink and do their sh-- over — press erase."

Dre said he's equally excited about Rakim's Aftermath debut, which

they'll likely begin work on in January. The LP will be called Oh My God.

"I've always been a fan of Rakim; I've always bought every record

twice," Dre said. "He's been one of the reasons why I'm still in hip-hop

today. So for me to be able to work with him is a straight-up blessing.

I'm just grateful. I'm gonna step into the studio and make this the best

record that I've ever made."

Dre celebrated the upcoming DVD/VHS release of "Up in Smoke: the Concert

Film" (Dec. 19) at a party in Santa Monica, California, on Thursday

night. The film features live footage from the summer's Up in Smoke

Tour, which featured Dre, Cube, Snoop and Eminem, among others.

"A lot of people were saying we'd do one or two shows until the violence

comes in and shuts it down," Dre said. "We kept it well-organized and

professional, and at the end we proved everybody wrong. I think that was

a big accomplishment for hip-hop, because it was no more, no less than a

hip-hop show. That's all we set our minds to do — do straight-up,

hardcore hip-hop, sell out arenas and keep it peaceful. That's a very

difficult thing to do, and we pulled it off."