LL Cool J Says Dr. Dre Was Initially Going To Produce His New Album

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"The Night That Changed America: A GRAMMY Salute To The Beatles" - Fixed Show
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 27: Host LL Cool J speaks onstage during "The Night That Changed America: A GRAMMY Salute To The Beatles" at the Los Angeles Convention Center on January 27, 2014 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images for NARAS)
LL Cool J says Dr. Dre was going to produce his new album before he chose to go with Q-Tip.

LL Cool J says that Dr. Dre had signed on to produce his upcoming album; however, after Phife Dawg visited him in a dream, LL Cool J contacted Q-Tip. He explained how the collaboration came to be during an appearance on Way Up With Angela Yee.

“So, the real story is that I did about 30 to 40 songs with Dr. Dre, and in doing those songs I felt like — the music was amazing what Dre was bringing to the table was super dope — but I felt like the writing, what I was bringing to these songs didn’t feel strong enough to me,” he explained. “I didn’t feel like I was expressing, I was getting out of me, what I was feeling. In my mind, I didn’t feel like it was written properly.”

LL Cool J & Dr. Dre At The 2000 Radio Music Awards

Rap artists Dr. Dre and LL Cool J pose backstage after the 2000 Radio Music Awards at the Aladdin Hotel in Las Vegas, 11/04/00. (Photo by Kevin Winter/ABC/ImageDirect)

From there, LL Cool J elaborated on his dream with the late Phife Dawg. “So, I took a pause. Me and Dre just kinda paused for a minute. And I ended up having a dream, and in this dream Phife Dawg from A Tribe Called Quest came to me,” he added. “When he came in my dream he was like ‘Yo, that album you gonna do with Dre is gonna be dope.’ And I’m looking at him and he’s smirking a little bit. He had a funny look on his face. And then when I woke up, I just felt like Q-Tip was on my spirit. So I just called him. He picked up and I told him that I wanted to do an album. We went and did the record and the rest is history.”

LL Cool J On His Upcoming Album

The new album will be LL Cool J's first full-length effort since 2013's Authentic and will coincide with the 50th anniversary of hip-hop. While he's kept details on the project close to his chest, a recent report from AllHipHop noted that Eminem, Nas, Fat Joe, Rick Ross, and Saweetie will all feature on the album.


About The Author
Cole Blake is currently an Editor at HotNewHipHop based out of Brooklyn, New York. He began working at the site as an intern back in 2018 while studying journalism at St. John’s University. In the time since, he’s graduated with a bachelor's degree and written extensively about a wide range of topics including pop culture, film & television, politics, video games, sports, and much more. He’s also covered music festivals such as Gov. Ball and Rolling Loud. You can find him publishing work for HNHH from Monday to Wednesday or on weekends. On the sports front, Cole’s a passionate NBA and NFL fan with his favorite teams being the Indianapolis Colts and Los Angeles Lakers. He also roots for the Yankees whenever he finds himself at Yankee Stadium or the Red Storm when in the company of other SJU alumni. His favorite hip-hop artists are billy woods, Earl Sweatshirt, Cam’ron, MIKE, and Mach-Hommy.