Dr. Dre trumpets his own business acumen in the surprise new song “Gunfire,” which premiered during Sunday’s debut episode of The Defiant Ones. The HBO documentary explores the lives and careers of the rapper and record executive Jimmy Iovine.
“How you spell C.E.O.? D.R.E./ What a nigga dream he could try to be,” the MC rhymes in a rapid-fire flow over droning horn samples and a skittering beat. “Even though I’m from a place where niggas got TECs, don’t mean technology/ Grew up ’round Blood niggas, real camaraderie/ Plus Crip niggas on the other side of me/ But I’m the only nigga that I ever tried to be.”
It’s unclear whether “Gunfire” is a newly recorded track or an archival piece revived for the documentary project. The song is Dr. Dre’s first since 2015’s Compton, the pseudo-soundtrack to that year’s N.W.A. biopic Straight Outta Compton. A rep for the rapper-producer tells Rolling Stone that he has no plans to release the song commercially.
In the four-part The Defiant Ones, director Allen Hughes explores Dr. Dre’s unlikely partnership with Iovine – from their individual career paths (Iovine as a prominent producer, Dre as a founding member of N.W.A) to their 2006 co-launch of Beats Electronics in 2006 and its $3 billion sale to Apple eight years later.
The film includes interviews with the duo’s numerous respective collaborators, including Eminem, Bruce Springsteen, U2’s Bono, Kendrick Lamar, Patti Smith, Gwen Stefani, Ice Cube and Nine Inch Nails’ Trent Reznor.
The doc’s second installment premieres Monday, July 10th on HBO.