Dr. Dre’s video for “Kush,” the lead single off Detox, hit the Net on Friday (December 10), and the clip seems to confirm the much-delayed album will be released in the near future. It’s only been a little more than a decade since the doctor dropped his last project, after all. But seeing the new video, featuring Snoop Dogg and Akon, brought to mind some other recent comeback stories in hip-hop. Here, we give you a rundown of the videos that accompanied them.
Eminem, “We Made You”
Released in 2009, “We Made You” was Marshall Mathers’ first solo look since his ’05 Encore album. In a sense, he picked up right where he left off, bashing celebrities and mocking the public’s love affair with pop culture. But the plan backfired, and Em left the impression that the only one obsessed with pop culture — dated pop culture, at that — was Em. As a result, his Relapse was critically panned as a comeback album; it wasn’t until this year’s Recovery that Eminem truly re-established his place in music .
Jay-Z, “Show Me What You Got”
Hov announced his retirement from rap as a solo artist in 2003 with The Black Album. But only three years later, he returned with a new album, Kingdom Come and a video for its lead single, “Show Me What You Got.” The Just Blaze-produced track compelled director F. Gary Gray, known for being selective about his projects, to helm the video. The video was filmed in Monaco, and Jay enlistedJay enlisted race car drivers Danica Patrick and Dale Earnhardt Jr. for the well-received clip.
Kanye West, “Power”
Inspired by director Marco Brambilla’s “Civilization” installation at New York’s Standard Hotel, the video for ’Ye’s “Power” was dubbed “Portrait of Power.” Less a music video than a piece of moving art, the visual showed Kanye surrounded by angels and assorted religious imagery. Coming off “Taylor-gate,” its epic quality matched the brooding scope of the song and it proved to be the right approach as critics and fans alike lapped it up.
T.I., “I’m Back”
T.I. had served out a yearlong prison stint, when he returned in April with “I’m Back.” The video found the Atlanta rapper getting reacquainted with his life on the outside, namely foreign cars, expensive jewelry and the ’hood. Rapping with an American flag as the backdrop, Tip seemed to be saying, “I’m still a shining example of the American Dream.” Or, perhaps it was an allusion to career plans gone awry, an American Dream deferred. The MC’s comeback has hit some speed bumps, as his No Mercy album was released this week while the rapper serves out a new 11-month prison sentence.
Dr. Dre, “Still D.R.E.”
“Kush” isn’t the first video Dre made fans wait umpteen years for. The super-producer did the same with “Still D.R.E.,” which was the lead song from 1999’s The Chronic 2001. It had been seven years since he’d dropped The Chronic. Clearly, Dre likes to take his time. The “Still D.R.E.” clip, featuring Snoop Dogg, found the doctor celebrating low-riders, scantily clad women and, of course, gangsta music.
What’s your favorite comeback video? Tell us in the comments!