Dr. Dre is suing Death Row Records, claiming he hasn’t received royalties on The Chronic since leaving the label in 1996. So why’d he wait until now to take legal action? Because Death Row went bankrupt and was then reformed by a company called WIDEawake, and the new Death Row is selling something called The Chronic Re-Lit, plus an unauthorized “best of.” This quote from Dre’s lawyer Howard King* is the best part: “When it came to paying artist royalties and honoring limits on Dr. Dre recordings that could be released, the “new” Death Row Records, to quote our client, ‘forgot about Dre.’ This lawsuit will make sure they remember.” (It’s a golden age for hilarious lawyers!)
We know what you’re thinking — shouldn’t Dre be in the goddamn studio, finishing Detox, instead of worrying about this stuff? Listen, the Doc knows what he’s doing: First, he revolutionized the quality of digital music so that when we finally do hear the album, we’ll be able to truly appreciate its genius. Now he’s cleaning up the shady business practices of the music industry so that no one will be able to screw him on those inevitable bountiful Detox royalties. It’s just some more housecleaning! We assure you, Detox is right around the corner.
*By the way, they’re suing for $75,000. Can’t Dre just collect one or two bar mitzvah appearance fees or something to make up the difference?
Dr. Dre Sues Over Unpaid ‘Chronic’ Royalties [AP via Billboard]