Dr. Dre has a long history of performing with artists he’s signed and/or cosigned, and on Tuesday night in London, Anderson.Paak — who signed with Dre’s Aftermath label in 2016 — was no exception.
The legendary N.W.A-cofounder, producer, rapper and entrepreneur took the stage at Paak’s Apple Music/Beats-sponsored free concert at the O2 Brixton Academy, performing a short medley of “Still D.R.E.” and “The Next Episode” from his “2001” album (which was released when Paak was 13, but who’s counting?). He also said he was in the house “to present and represent” Paak.
“When I finally met [Dre], for some reason I didn’t have any super-fanboy jitter thing, where I couldn’t be myself,” Paak, who had released his debut album, “Venice,” two years before signing with Aftermath, recalled to The Guardian in 2016. “I was so confident by that point I just said: ‘Let me get on the mic and try something.’ And I remember closing my eyes and going off the top, and then opening them and it was like, ‘Whooaaaahhh!!’ If he’d called five years ago, I don’t think I’d have been ready.”
A brand-new Paak song, “When It’s Over,” is the soundtrack for an eye-popping Spike Jonze-directed ad for Apple Music starring FKA Twigs.