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Dr Dre, TI and Nas track leaks
Just weeks after a leak of the Dr Dre-produced Eminem/50 Cent track, Crack A Bottle, a new Dre track has been played on US radio.
This one, called Topless, appears to be from Dre's own album Detox, which has been nearly nine years in gestation.
The song was played by DJ Envy on NYC hip-hop station Hot97. Dre is currently working on completing Detox and the new Eminem album, Relapse.
Topless features TI and Nas, but it seems clear that the track is an incomplete demo. Mainly because Dre doesn't actually rap on it.
The track opens with TI delivering rhymes that are clearly meant to come out of Dre's mouth, as they reference the producer's time in NWA with Eazy E: "Look Eazy, ain't a damn thing changed, I promise / Still live like we did back on Straight Outta Compton…"
It's an open secret in hip-hop that Dre gets rap's best lyricists in the game to draft verses for him, and that appears to be the case here.
The track itself sounds like a trademark Dre production, with a piano riff and bass-heavy production. Dre has recently been taking piano lessons from veteran MOR songwriter Burt Bacharach.
What this means for Detox's track-listing or eventual release, we can only guess. Detox has been so long in production it's become something of the Chinese Democracy of hip-hop. No-one knows whether it's really finished or when it is likely to see a release.
"A little birdie sat on my shoulder and told me that the Detox album is going to be phenomenal" TI, who features on Topless
And, like Guns N' Roses' Axl Rose, Dre has reportedly scrapped many hours of studio recordings over recent years. He's a notorious perfectionist and is reportedly dismayed that unfinished and unmastered snippets of tracks keep leaking.
So Topless could be on Detox, or it could not. TI recently declined to even confirm his involvement. "I can not confirm or deny any professional affiliation," he said. "Dr Dre, he's an outstanding guy. A little birdie sat on my shoulder and told me that the Detox album is going to be phenomenal."
Either way, this leaked version of Topless is certainly incomplete.