February 15 2011
This Thursday is Dr. Dre's Birthday. Hip Hop fans around the world, have declared an un-official Dr Dre Holiday called Dre Day. His music and his living legacy is celebrated this week, so I thought we'd explore his music on the Seven o'Clock Sample.
Dr. Dre is known by my kids as the guy who sells Dr. Pepper and those headphones on DJ Hero. But for those who are a little older, he is the pioneer of West Coast G-Funk party anthems. Dre is responsible for some of the biggest Hip Hop hits of all time.
I thought today, we'd put Dre under the scalpel and dissect one of his biggest hits, "California Love". The song was released as 2Pac's comeback single upon his release from prison in 1995. It not only featured Dre on the 1st verse ( a bold move ), but also featured Roger of Zapp and Roger!
Here is the 1995 video, with a great Chris Rock cameo at the top!
So, let's break this song down...
The main piano and horn melody comes from an unlikely source, Joe Cocker.
(sorry for the lame video...)
The bridge at the end of "California Love", is a sample of Zapp's "Dance Floor."
The main chorus is my favorite sample in this song. It's by a somewhat forgotten artists called Ronnie Hudson. In 1982, Ronnie Hudson and the Street People had a west coast hit with their track "West Coast Poplock". A very dated song, that was brought back to life by Dr. Dre.