/  07.07.2022

Dr. Dre‘s attorney, Peter Paterno, revealed that Disney once prepared an offer to sign the rap icon after the success of his debut album, The Chronic.

During an episode of the Connection is Magic podcast, Paterno said the multi-billion dollar company was willing to offer Dr. Dre a $4 million deal. His lyrics, however, caused Disney to renege on the deal.

“We’d have these music meetings every week with Michael Eisner at Disney,” Paterno said. “and Michael Eisner came by, and he sees the record’s at number one, and he goes, ‘I thought you had a relationship with this guy?’ I said, ‘I do.”

After reading some lyrics from the album to Eisner, Paterno said the deal was off.

“He said, ‘How come we don’t have this record?’ I go, ‘Well, Michael, let me just read you some of the lyrics… motherf*cker, motherf*cker. And you know what this is on the cover? That’s a marijuana leaf,'” Paterno said. “The deal was $4 million. He goes, ‘We can’t do that!’ I go, ‘That’s why he’s not on the label.'”

At the time of the potential deal, Paterno was the president of Disney’s Hollywood Records. However, he left the company in November 1993. The label would eventually suffer from a lack of sales and a missed opportunity to sign Nirvana and Cypress Hill.

As Paterno admitted, Jimmy Lovine would have gotten the deal with Dr. Dre anyway because he was smarter than he was.

“To be fair, Jimmy [Lovine, co-founder of Interscope] would’ve probably would’ve gotten it anyway ’cause he was smarter than I was,” Paterno said. “But I didn’t even try. I mean, to be really honest, I had enough problems with hip-hop with Disney.”

In 1992, Interscope negotiated a $10 million deal with Dr. Dre and Suge Knight to finance and distribute their label, Death Row Records. Nevertheless, Dr. Dre and Paterno first worked together in 1999 around the release of his second solo album, 2001.

You can watch the entire interview below.


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