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February 25th, 2011
Dr. Dre and Eminem have returned to the booth to bring us possibly another track off the elusive Detox album, rumoured to be Dre’s last solo effort. The producer and his protégé reunite to rap about their affection for one another, with Em thanking Dre for believing in him and signing the young rapper when the label was against the decision. In return, Dre raps about Eminem being the only friend that has stood by Dre during dark periods, including the recent loss of his 20 year old son to a drug overdose.
Skylar Grey, who has been popping up on the charts with collaborations alongside Diddy Dirty Money and Lupe Fiasco, finally makes a physical appearance in the video. The singer, who in the past went by her real name Holly Brook and sang on Fort Minor’s Where’d You Go, has been a bit of a mystery, even remaining out of shot for her performance at this year’s Grammys with Dre and Eminem. Grey, along with I Need a Doctor’s producer Alex Da Kid make appearances in the video.
The video ends with Dr. Dre visiting the grave of Eric Wright, who most will recognize by his stage name Eazy E. Eazy and Dre started N.W.A. in the late 1980s, but the two parted after a bitter feud that involved Suge Knight threatening Eazy’s family in order to have Dre released from his contract. Eazy lost his battle with AIDS in 1995, days after publicly announcing he was suffering from the disease. Dre and Eazy made amends days before the rapper’ death.
While I’m not 100 per cent certain of the significance, if any, of the date at the beginning of the video, February 18, 2001 is also the date of the Daytona 500 crash that took the life of NASCAR racer Dale Earnhardt Sr. Dre is seen getting into a high speed crash with his Porsche at the beginning of the video which could be a nod to Earnhardt.
While most music videos that take on a film-like quality with an extended intro often serve to pad the ego of the artist, I Need A Doctor gives fans a rare glimpse into the personal life of one of the most influential Producers and MC’s in music today. The relationship between Dre and Eminem that plays out in the song shows the strength of the bond that spawned a career for a poor kid from Detroit who later became the biggest artist in the world.
*Warning: This video contains explicit lyrical content. Viewer discretion is advised.Tweet