Dr. Dre has built a legacy guiding the careers of young rappers and crafting stellar debuts. However, where the Good Doctor excelled with D.O.C., Snoop Dogg, Eminem, 50 Cent, Game and Kendrick Lamar, he failed with Eve. Not that it was Dre’s fault; he and the Philadelphia spitter just didn’t have the right chemistry.
“Aftermath was my first home, with Dr. Dre,” Eve reminded viewers when she appeared on Wednesday’s “RapFix Live.” “But me and Dre just couldn’t get along.”
Eve isn’t the first artist to fail to put out an official album with Dre. Bishop Lamont, Joell Ortiz and rap icon Rakim were all at one point signed to Aftermath, but all left without putting out an album. Most artists who have ever worked with the production great will tell you that he is meticulous. Couple that with Eve’s self-admitted stubbornness and the union between her and The Chronic beat wizard.
“I’m a strong chick and I don’t like being told what to do. I don’t care if you’re the best at what you do,” she said. “Dre just knows how to push your buttons, but I just have to say every time he pushed my buttons, he got the best out of me. So he knew what he was doin’.”
After her Aftermath deal fizzled out, Eve linked with Ruff Ryders and went on to make her mark selling millions of records. She even linked back up with Dre on her 2001 single “Let Me Blow Ya Mind” with Gwen Stefani, so there is clearly no love lost, and these days, Eve can look back at the past and laugh. “I can’t remember exactly what record, but he made me say one word over, like 45 times. I swear to God; I’m not lying,” she said anecdotally. “He wouldn’t let me out of the studio. I kicked the mic down and threw a bottle at the glass, and after I did all that, I said it the right way and he let me out.”
Though things didn’t work out, Interscope head Jimmy Iovine saw an opportunity to move Eve to Ruff Ryders, the Interscope-distributed label with which she dropped her 1999 debut Let There Be Eve… Ruff Ryders’ First Lady. For Eve, it’s clear that timing is everything and her time with Dre just wasn’t right. “If I would’ve come out, then I wouldn’t be where I am now and I know that 100 percent,” she said.
What’s your favorite Eve song? Let us know in the comments!