While Dr. Dre has collaborated with some of the biggest musicians of his generation throughout his legendary career, he passed on working with two of his heroes, Michael Jackson and Prince.
He made the revelation during the latest episode of Kevin Hart’s Hart To Heart, after discussing some of the artists he would love to feature on a “dream” collab.
“Curtis Mayfield, Marvin Gaye, Kurt Cobain, Jimi Hendrix, Freddie Mercury—yeah, I can go on: Barry White, Isaac Hayes, Led Zeppelin,” Dr. Dre said before confessing there were times he “bowed out.”
Hart then asked him to name the artists and was shocked when Dr. Dre admitted to turning down Michael Jackson and Prince.
“They just asked me to work with ’em,” the superproducer explained and went to reveal his reaction. “What the f### am I gonna do in the studio with them? Those are my f#####’ heroes, man!”
Dr. Dre Explains Why He Turned The Legends Down
Dr. Dre went on to explain that while he was “definitely curious,” he prefers to produce for rising stars over legends.
“My entire life and career has been dealing with and working with new artists,” he continied. “That’s what I like. Nobody comes in with an agenda. These m########## show up on time, everything. It’s a ball of clay when they walk into the room. Just form it and do what you want—that’s what I want. Everybody else, especially my heroes, they’re comin’ in, and there’s a set plan as to how the s### should sound. I can’t explore.”
The Aftermath founder went on to explain that he doesn’t want to taint his perception of the legends he grew up listening to.
“I like the way that I feel about Stevie, Prince, Michael , [Bruce] Springsteen, and all of these amazing artists, and I don’t want to change it by working with them,” he stated. “I don’t need that on my resume.”
Elsewhere during the interview Dr. Dre admitted that he stood up a Motown legend. Stevie Wonder reached out to Dre after collaborating on Marsha Ambrosius’ album.
”Why don’t we work together and just write a song together?” Dre recalled Steviw Wonder asking him. “[I was like], ‘Yeah. Alright. Alright, Stevie,’ and uh, yeah, I didn’t show up. What the f### am I gonna do in the studio with Stevie Wonder? Huh? Touch the drums? No. Touch the keyboard? No. What the f###? Nah. I went that way.”